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What scenarios could qualify you for FMLA leave?

Though you, like most other California residents, know that going to work is often a necessary part of life, certain situations may result in you needing time away from the office or wherever you may carry out your job-related duties. In some cases, those events may present a need for recurring time off or for an extended leave. However, you may wonder how those missed days could affect your employment status.

Luckily, for certain scenarios, you may qualify for time off under the Family and Medical Leave Act. This act allows you to take a certain amount of leave without suffering negative impacts from your employer. However, the reasons for the leave must meet certain stipulations, or you will not qualify for protection under FMLA.

Birth of a child

If you or your spouse has recently given birth, FMLA entitles you to take time away from work in order to care for your child or your spouse. Because FMLA allows you to take a total of 12 weeks away from work, you could either take those 12 weeks continuously, choose to spread those weeks out over a year or take intermittent parental leave by reducing regular work hours.

Serious health issue of a family member

If a family member suffers from a serious health condition that requires your care, you may qualify for FMLA leave. However, only certain family member qualify under the act, and those family members are your spouse, your children or your parents. As a result, if your spouse's parents or your grandparents become seriously ill or develop some other condition, you cannot take leave time under FMLA to provide care.

Personal serious health issue

In addition to taking time off to care for a qualifying family member, you could also take time off to attend to your own serious health conditions. However, you would need to meet specific stipulations in order to qualify. For instance, you must receive treatment for a chronic condition at least twice a year, and you may have to provide documentation of your illness.

Denial of leave or retaliation

In some cases, employers may still deny you leave even if your circumstances qualify under FMLA, or you could face negative retaliation for taking your leave. If you suffer from such a violation of your rights, you may wish to find out what actions you could take to address the unfair treatment. Exploring your legal options may help you determine whether you have legal grounds to file a lawsuit for wrongdoing.

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