${site.data.firmName}${SEMFirmNameAlt}
Call Today 262-373-9786

Family and Medical Leave Act Archives

Making the Family and Medical Leave Act work

The federal Family and Medical Leave Act has nuances that both Wisconsin employees and their supervisors need to understand in order to ensure the program works smoothly. A company's human resources department generally approves an employee's request for leave, but supervisors need to be aware of the act's regulations, too.

Changes in caregiver trends and FMLA

As many Wisconsin families have both parents working to make ends meet, the need for one of them to take time off to care for a sick child could have an adverse employment effect. In other cases, a single-parent household could be headed by either a mother or a father, and that party might need to make use of FMLA rights at times based on a child's medical needs. However, the increasing need for fathers to use this type of leave does not always equate to a cooperative response from an employer. Just over one-fourth of FMLA cases filed for problems related to child care are filed by men.

Disability and hostile work environments

Although most Wisconsin employees and supervisors understand that making fun of another employee's disability is never acceptable in the workplace, it can still occasionally happen. Supervisors especially should remember that it is their responsibility to stop any harassment against employees as soon as possible. Additionally, they are required to take steps that will prevent the harassment in the future.

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.

Employers should train managers on FMLA rights

Many Wisconsin employees may be unaware of their rights under the Family and Medical Leave Act, and their supervisors at work may not be clear on what the policies do and do not permit. Staples, the office supply chain, was forced to pay one of its former employees $250,000 because instead of telling him he could take time off to take care of his wife, who was terminally ill, the company had him working from home. The man was fired, and he successfully sued Staples for interference.

Same-sex spouses of federal workers officially included in FMLA

On April 8, the Office of Personnel Management officially published the final rule that allows gay and lesbian federal workers in Wisconsin and around the country to take time off to care for spouses when they are ill. The rule changes the statutory language in the federal Family and Medical Leave Act.

The provisions of the Family and Medical Leave Act

Wisconsin residents may know that the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 entitles most employees working for companies with 50 or more workers to take job-protected time off work when they or a close family member becomes sick. However, the provisions of the FMLA do not cover all illnesses or injuries, and medical conditions must meet at least one of six conditions for the law to apply.

FMLA leave and retaliation

Employees in Wisconsin who take leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act should be aware that while they are protected for taking leave, their employers can still discipline them for unrelated reasons. This happened with one woman who was a supervisor. While she was on FMLA leave, some of the people who worked for her complained to management that she spent so much time online that she was unavailable to them.

The importance of understanding FMLA in Wisconsin

A recent case involving a nurse with debilitating migraine headaches shows how important it is that individuals understand how the Federal Medical Leave Act, or FMLA, works. The woman in question was suffering from headaches so severe that it prevented her from doing her job. After her employer, a hospital, noticed the amount of time she was taking off work, they suggested that she go on intermittent FMLA leave.

Alan C. Olson & Associates | 2880 S Moorland Rd | New Berlin, WI 53151
Phone: 262-373-9786 | Toll Free: 1-888-742-9520 | Map & Directions