How Long Can a Person Use FMLA (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 12 Weeks

Family and Medical Leave Act, shortened as FMLA, is a USA law that is legislated by President Bill Clinton in 1993. This Act is a consequence of the increased workforce and the condition of work they offered due to industrialization. The world is changing rapidly because of Globalization. The process of Globalization led to the increased production of goods and services. Consequently, the workforce also expanded.

Many industries evolved, which sometimes may lead to gradual health degradation of workers. So, it is a matter of state importance to protect workers’ health and job. FMLA ensures that the USA workers can get medical leave without losing the job, however, without paying. It is mainly used by female workers during their pregnancy or to take care of their infants.

How Long Can a Person Use FMLA?

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) grants certain employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per 12 months. It also wants their worker’s health gains to be maintained during the break.

FMLA is intended to support employees balance their work and family responsibilities by taking flexible unpaid leave for specific family and medical reasons. The Act also tries to support employers’ genuine interests and promote equal employment opportunities for men and women.

Workers should provide an intimation of 30 days to employers if birth or adoption is foreseeable and for severe health situations if possible. According to medical advice, medications should be arranged by the workers so that it does not obstruct the operations of the employer unnecessarily.

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Not only a 30-day notice, but there are also other conditions to be addressed while getting the FMLA rights. If an employee requires to leave for the first time the person must initially apply to the Family and Medical Leave Act. In case an employee wants to leave again under the FMLA act, the identical method is to continue.

However, FMLA is applicable for workers who completed at least one year of their service. Additionally, the employer must be working in a company with a minimum of fifty employees or at least situated in the surroundings of about 75 miles from that location. A person can be granted FMLA under the following cases.

  1. Caring for a child (birth, adoption, or something related to it )
  2. Caring for an ill-health immediate family member.
  3. Care for oneself due to ill-health.
  4. To address any serious family-related issues.
Reason for leaveDuration of leave
Health and family issues12 Weeks
To take care of a sick and Military family member 26 Weeks

Why Does a Person Can Use FMLA That Long

Every person may get health issues at least once in a lifetime that are serious. Some people may need special treatment and a family member to take care of them. We cannot control the severe health compilations. It depends on how we take care of ourselves. Many times this treatment would take a few months to recover.

However, it is the responsibility of the company to provide basic facilities to their employees. As most of the companies are profit-oriented, they may not worry about the employees. Consequently, this may also affect the other workforce. So, the government must ensure that the workers are getting leaves for health and family issues.

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Hence, the state’s Government needs to enact a law that ensures workers’ proper health leaves. FMLA was one such act that provides the leave without losing the job, but unpaid. This act controls the companies across the country to safeguard the worker’s employment.

In most cases, the health issues may last for three months or more. Especially, pregnant women need more than three months of rest before and after giving birth. However, they also need their family members’ support.

Usually, the employers may count the general leaves under FMLA and reduce the actual number of days while applied to FMLA. In that case, the worker must request their employer to extend the leave.

Conclusion

The act faced controversy when the president passed it. Much of the argument concentrated on its influence on the business community and on whether the bill should be gender-neutral or not. To make the law more acceptable, many argued that the legislation would decrease abortion rates.

Defenders of the law focused on its interests to men and children to counter the allegation that it provided women “special treatment”. Other controversies centered on whether to provide paid leave or unpaid. By encountering all the arguments, the bill was enacted successfully.

Reference

  1. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/00098655.1995.9957256
  2. https://ecommons.cornell.edu/handle/1813/89826

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