New poster with easier-to-understand FMLA regulations

The U.S. Department of Labor has produced a new poster on the Family and Medical Leave Act for covered employers in Wisconsin and around the country to post in the workplace. Those employers are not required to use the new poster if they have an older one containing the same information on display, but they might want to because the information is presented in a way that is easier to read and understand.

A FMLA poster must be hung at a FMLA-eligible workplace even if none of the employees themselves are eligible for FMLA. The poster must not only be visible to current employees but to job applicants as well. The poster must also be distributed to employees in some way. This might be in an employee handbook or provided with other new hire paperwork such as information on benefits. It can also be distributed electronically. If an employer’s workforce is significantly made up of people who cannot read English, then the notice must be provided in a language they can read.

The Department of Labor has also issued a new set of guidelines for employers that do not add information but explain FMLA regulations more clearly. Included are flowcharts and a section that highlights some of the provisions that employers may be less familiar with.

Employees and employers alike may not entirely understand what is and is not allowed under FMLA including family leave. However, whether or not an employer is deliberately denying an employee FMLA leave or doing so due to lack of understanding of the polices, that employer may still be liable for denial or retaliation. Employees who have been adversely treated for attempting to avail themselves of their rights under this act may want to meet with an attorney in order to determine how best to proceed.

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