Familyand Medical Leave Act
Familyand Medical Leave Act
Thefamily and medical leave allowance applies to workers in the UnitedStates engaged in covered institutions. They have the privilege oftaking unpaid and job-protected leave for a certain duration of timeeither family or medical reasons. Te act stipulates that the employeeis under the company’s medical scheme and can enjoy the privilegesas though he/she had not taken leave. Reasons for taking it includechildbirth, taking care of a newly adopted child, heath problem ortaking care of a close family member suffering from an ailment. Thegranted time is about 12 weeks in a year (US Department of Labor,nd).
Whenemployers are giving FMLA to workers, they follow several steps.First, the act provides them with obligations to fulfill to avoidcontravening the implementation of the act. They also acquaint theemployees with their responsibilities regarding the act. They becomeaware of the situations in which they can request for leave.Employees have to make a formal request to get the leave through thefilling of a form and hand it to the management to check on theeligibility status. The employer responds to the application eitherpositively or negatively giving sufficient reasons. Eligible memberstake a leave, and the employer has to communicate with them inanticipation of their return to the workplace (United StatesDepartment of labor, n.d).
TheFMLA also provides for intermittent leave. It involves the taking afew hours every day from work to attend to medical or family reasons.It comes with various challenges in the workplace. First, theemployer has to restructure some working positions to suit thesubject. The employee has to occupy another area that is not sointense so that his/her leave will have the least interruption to theoperations in the workplace. Sometimes it becomes difficult is theemployee does not have the required skill for eh most favorableposition for him/her (Corbin, 2012).
Theconsequence of the above challenge is that there is a disruption inthe working o other employees. Although employees should be dynamicto embrace changes as they come, trying to fit in another e employeemay shift their duties, and they may not perform optimally. Besidesthis, the lack of particular skills in a worker who wants a shift tosuit his intermittent working behavior leads to reduced productionwhen subjected to a new occupation (Corbin, 2012).
Someemployees due to various reasons extend their stay under the FMLA. Ifthe employer does not find sufficient reason for the extension of theprogram, the worker risks losing his/her job. According to the Act,employees who go past the period should have their medical benefitsand allowances terminated. Some employers may decide to violate thisright by denying employees leaves on the basis of various unsoundreasons. The act gives the employee right to sue the company to beout of duty. The act also forces the company to reinstate theemployees to their initial positions and pay them any deniedallowances (Hayes, Smith, Tyner & Barger, 2012).
Inconclusion, the institution that came up with the act wanted to giveemployees freedom and time take care of their needs while at the sametime enjoying the benefits that accrue to them. However, most areusing it in the most frivolous way of asking for leaves even whenthey do not deserve them. The result is reduced productivity andincreased payment in the long run. It has not effectively achievedits intended mandate.
Corbin,A. K. (2012). Intermittent Leave and the Family Medical Leave Act.Availableat SSRN 2286273.Retrievedfrom http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2286273
Hayes,S., Smith, J., Tyner, L. & Barger, J. (2012). $21Billion and Counting The Burdens of FMLA to Employers. Compensation& Benefits Review,44(1): 18-23.
UnitedStates Department of labor. n.d. Familyand Medical Leave Act.Web. Retrieved from http://www.dol.gov/whd/fmla/