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Thread: Family Medical Leave Act

  1. #1
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    Family Medical Leave Act

    I'm posting to remind everyone about FMLA. Recently a member of our department had their father die after a very long decline. My co-worker and a few of her siblings who lived nearby were the primary caretakers. She was working full-time and caring for her father part-time for many months.
    Finally when he was approved for hospice care (prognosis is less than 6 months to live) then she realized she could take FMLA. Of course that is unpaid leave, and she is a single-person household, but it was something she was willing to do.
    Ironically, her father passed away that week right after she received approval.

    My point is that I wish we had all thought of it sooner as an option for her. She stayed on top of her workload but took every single vacation day as care-taking time for her dad. She looked very tired towards the end, but now that 2 weeks have passed since the funeral she's just beginning to look like her old self.
    Please: if you know anyone in this situation encourage them to take advantage of FMLA.

  2. #2
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    Thank you, I used it when my middle kid had a serious surgery. She was getting sick for about 6 weeks and had 9 days in the hospital and then 4 weeks of recovery. I still worked but was able to take more time off without it counting against me for attendance purposes. I really loved how my bank manager knew that it was an option when i needed it.

  3. #3
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    FMLA is a good employee benefit, but I always said it is for the middle class. Poorer people cant afford to go without a paycheck for that many weeks.

  4. #4
    Moderator Float On's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by iris lilies View Post
    Poorer people cant afford to go without a paycheck for that many weeks.
    I was so thankful when my work allowed me to have medical paid time off for 12 weeks when I needed it. I spent about 3/4 of the next year working 3-5 hours extra a week to make up for it.
    Float On: My "Happy Place" is on my little kayak in the coves of Table Rock Lake.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Simplemind's Avatar
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    Where I was, if you ran out of paid time for your FMLA they would open it up for donations and most of them time (unless you were known to abuse your time off) people would donate some of their own time to make up the difference.

  6. #6
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    Where I work there was no paid FMLA, and there was no way I could have stopped working to take care of my family. So I did not use that.
    I think IL is right; it's not a benefit with much value to folks needing to bring in their regular income.

  7. #7
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    I still think there is a benefit although I admit it is very hard to go without the income. For people who may work in a large company or for a boss who is not understanding they have some protection for their job and time off. They cannot have this time held against them for purposes like reviews. I worked for several bosses that were younger and did not have kids and that was rough, my bank manager had children so she is the one who suggested it. Sometimes it is the people above them however, they see absences and there is a zero tolerance policy in place, so the FMLA protects you and the people who supervise you. If I had a staff who needed it I would do that instead of just excusing their time off because my supervisors may question my judgment in it.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Miss Cellane's Avatar
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    FMLA can also be taken in small bits and pieces. An afternoon here to take someone to the doctor's. Or if you suffer from migraines, for example, you can take a day or two off when one strikes. It doesn't all have to be taken at once. So while Lainye's co-worker might not have been able to take months off, she could have used FMLA to allow for time off from work to take her father to the hospital, the doctor, etc. And to stay home with him if no one else could be there one day a week or so.

    This also applies if the employee has an health condition. For example, if you have migraines, you could take a day or two off if a really bad one hits. Or if you need PT or some other medical treatment every other week, say.

    Yes, if you are paid hourly, you will lose some money if you take part of a day here and there. But sometimes that might be a better option. And I know a fair number of middle class families that would be hurting after 12 straight weeks with a missing salary.

    A larger problem, from my point of view, is that FMLA is available only after you have worked for a company for a year and have worked 1,250 hours in that year. And not all companies have to offer it--it only applies if the company has a minimum of 50 employees in a 75 mile radius. Anyone working for a small business is out of luck. There are a lot of people out there who don't even have FMLA to fall back on.

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