What is FMLA?
The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a 1993 federal law that provides up to twelve weeks of unpaid leave for eligible employees if they are unable to work due to illness or to care for a family member suffering from a serious health condition. Under the FMLA, insurance benefits continue without interruption or additional cost to the employee for up to twelve weeks.
How do I know if I am eligible to use FMLA?
If you have worked in the CH-UH school district for one year, you are eligible. Part time employees who worked less than 1250 hours in a year are not eligible for FMLA leave.
How is FMLA calculated?
FMLA is calculated on a “rolling year”. So if your extended absence began on October 10th and you exhausted the full twelve weeks of FMLA leave, your next eligibility for FMLA leave would be October 10th the following year.
How does sick leave work with FMLA?
Sick leave and FMLA leave are used concurrently. For example, if you have 30 days of accumulated sick leave, and you need leave that extends beyond the 30 days, your unpaid FMLA leave will continue for another 6 weeks, totaling 12 weeks of FMLA, and you will not have to pay full insurance premiums for that period of time.
You do not choose between sick leave and FMLA leave. FMLA was primarily designed for employees who do not have paid leave. Since we have paid sick leave, the District has set a criteria so that FMLA leave only applies when you use five or more consecutive days of sick leave. At that point, FMLA will apply and you will simultaneously be using FMLA leave and sick leave effective with the first day of your absence.
If you have used sick leave intermittently, a day here and there, the District has set another criteria so that FMLA will not apply unless you have used eight or more days of sick leave within a one month period. For example, if you were absent due to illness ten days in a given month, and you received an FMLA notification from the District, you would be eligible for ten more weeks of FMLA in the course of the rolling year.
How will I know that I need to use FMLA?
You will receive an e mail notification from the Human Resources Department asking you to confirm that you are eligible for FMLA and also asking you to estimate, if possible, the length of your absence.
What do I need to do to comply with the district directives around FMLA?
You will need to respond to the email as indicated above. You will then receive a notice of eligibility for FMLA from the Board. You may also need to have a form completed by a physician or health care provider for yourself or the affected family member.
What conditions are eligible for FMLA?
Your own serious health condition or that of a family member which is defined as a condition that involves inpatient care or continuing treatment by a health care provider; birth and care of a newborn; placement of a child for adoption or foster care. There is a special provision in the FMLA that allow for eligible leave time if your spouse or family member is called to active duty or is serving in the military. Contact our Union Office if you need details on this section of the FMLA.
What happens when I run out of both FMLA and sick leave?
If it’s due to your own health condition, you will be placed on unpaid medical leave and will have to pay full premiums for your health insurance. If you are going to exhaust sick leave and FMLA leave due to a family member’s health condition, you need to contact our Union Office.
Will my Union help me with any issues arising out of my use of FMLA leave?
Absolutely. Just call the Union Office or email our President or Vice-President.
Where can I get additional information?
You can get detailed information on FMLA by going to this link: http://www.dol.gov/whd/fmla/employeeguide.htm
Here are the links to the forms referenced above:
FMLA Form for self: http://www.dol.gov/whd/forms/WH-380-E.pdf
FMLA Form for family member: http://www.dol.gov/whd/forms/WH-380-F.pdf
Notice of Eligibility and Rights:http://www.dol.gov/whd/forms/WH-381.pdf
Sample email notification from the Human Resources Department - (click here)