If you are expecting a child in the near future, it is important to understand the Family & Medical Leave Act and how it works. Many employers are required under this act to allow workers to have leave (unpaid) in order to care for a newborn child, care for a sick child, or for the arrival of an adopted child. Unfortunately, not all employers follow these guidelines and refuse to grant employees leave. If they reluctantly grant the leave, they may try to retaliate against the employee in the form of demotion. If this has happened to you, it may be possible to seek compensation for lost wages or other pain and suffering.
Forms of retaliation that can be violations of the law include the following:
At V. James DeSimone Law, our Los Angeles employment attorneys have three decades of experience protecting the rights of employees in a wide range of situations, including those involving the Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA). We know that many companies are required to grant this leave and the various ways to seek legal action if your rights have been violated. We have achieved multi-million dollar settlements and verdicts for clients in the past and we aim to help you walk away with a favorable outcome, as well.
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Knowing that parents would want to take time off work to be with their new family member, the federal government enacted the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which is a federal law that requires employers to provide certain employees under certain circumstances up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year.
Most employers are familiar with this law and typically are prepared to provide the 12 weeks to new mothers after the birth of a child, or adoption of a child. However, the landscape of the modern family structure has changed, and with it, the role fathers play in the lives of their children. Fathers have equal rights to the benefits afforded by the Family Medical Leave Act.
FMLA is a federal law that allows all employees to take up to 12 weeks yearly of unpaid leave for family or medical reasons. Additionally, while an employee is on FMLA leave, they are entitled to keep their group health benefits, and not lose any health coverage. FMLA does not apply to all employers, however, this federal law does apply to all larger companies (with 50 or more employees), all public agencies, all public and private elementary and secondary schools.
All of these employers are required under the FMLA law to allow an eligible employee to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave each year for any of the following reasons:
To support and encourage new families as they grow with either newly born or adopted children, the federal government providers eligible employees with certain legal protections for work leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). This federal law requires employers that meet certain conditions to legally provide employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year.
FMLA applies to all larger companies (with 50 or more employees), all public agencies, all public and private elementary and secondary schools. When an employee is granted FMLA leave for any reason, including maternity leave, they must be allowed to keep their health coverage benefits. Additionally, their employer must keep their same or similar job open for them and available upon their return, with the same pay and benefits.
California passed the California Family Rights Act (CFRA), which is the state law that mirrors the federal FMLA law and provides similar rights, including the right of a father to take paternity leave for up to 12 weeks.
California extended the rights of fathers to allow a paternity leave benefit under smaller employers in The New Parent Leave Act. This law is similar to the federal FMLA and the state CFRA in that it provides up to 12 weeks of paternity leave, however, its protections extend to also apply to smaller employers (those with as few as 20 to 49 employees).
Employees must meet certain conditions to request FMLA leave. They must have worked for their current employer for at least 12 months and have at least 1,250 hours worked in those past 12 months, and work for an employer that has 50 or more employees.
While women will often take time off after the birth of a child. However, FMLA is an all-inclusive law and grants any father the right to 12 weeks of unpaid leave from work to care for a newborn child or newly adopted child.
As previously stated, the FMLA establishes guidelines regarding parental leave for both women and men following the birth of their child or the adoption of a child. Oftentimes, men have seen pushback from their employers related to requesting and receiving paternity leave.
It is important that any father wishing to take paternity leave under any of the aforementioned laws must do so according to established and reasonable practices. An employee must provide reasonable notice of their intent to take leave for a newly born, or newly adopted, child. A notice should preferably be in writing and include the amount of time a father expects to use, when the paternity leave will begin and end, and any other facts necessary regarding the leave.
As your tenacious advocates, our team is completely dedicated to helping you obtain justice after a difficult time. You put in the time and effort at work and you should be able to take the necessary leave when your family needs you the most. By taking swift legal action, you are giving yourself a chance to right the wrongs done to you and help prevent this from happening to another employee. You have rights; allow us to work to protect them. We proudly serve clients throughout Los Angeles County, Orange County, Riverside County, San Bernardino County, and all of Southern California.
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