POLICY IV-7. FAMILY AND MEDICAL LEAVE POLICY. In accordance with the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), the Company offers FMLA leave to its eligible employees. The Company will utilize the following method to measure the 12-month FMLA measuring period: Rolling 12 month period.
Employees who meet each of the following conditions are eligible for unpaid FMLA leave:
(1) have worked 12 months of prior service;
(2) have worked at least 1,250 hours during the 12 months immediately preceding the date on which FMLA would commence; and
(3) work at a location where at least 50 employees are employed (or where at least 50 employees are employed within a 75-mile radius).
Circumstances of Family and Medical Leave
(1) Parental Leave – Leave needed by the employee to care for or bond with the employee’s child (or a child to whom the employee will stand in loco parentis) within 12 months of the birth or placement for adoption or foster care of the child.
(2) Serious Family Illness Leave – Leave needed by the employee in order to care for a spouse, child or parent who has a serious health condition (as defined below and/or by law).
(3) Serious Personal Illness Leave – Leave needed by the employee because of a serious health condition which renders the employee unable to perform the essential functions of his job.
(4) Qualifying Military Exigency Leave – Leave needed by the employee because of a qualifying military exigency related to covered active duty, or a call to active duty status, of the employee’s spouse, child or parent. This leave applies to family members of regular Armed Forces service members, reservists or National Guard members called into federal service, and retired members of the regular Armed Forces.
(5) Service member Family Leave – Leave needed by the employee to care for a spouse, child, parent or next-of-kin (nearest blood relative of the service member) who is a member of the Armed Forces (including a member of the National Guard or Reserves and those on the temporary disability retired list) who has a serious injury or illness (1) incurred in the line of duty on active duty for which he or she is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation, or therapy; (2) otherwise in outpatient status; or (3) otherwise on the temporary disability retired list.
(1) Serious health condition: A serious health condition is an illness, injury, impairment or physical or mental condition which involves either an overnight stay in a medical care facility, or continuing treatment by a health care provider for a condition which either prevents the employee
from performing the functions of the employee’s job, or prevents the qualified family member from participating in school or other daily activities. Subject to certain conditions, the continuing treatment requirement may be met by a period of incapacity of more than three (3) consecutive calendar days combined with at least two visits to a health care provider or one visit and a regimen of continuing treatment, or incapacity due to pregnancy, or incapacity due to a chronic condition.
Other conditions may meet the definition of serious health condition.
An employee’s on-the-job injury will usually also qualify as a serious health condition. In this instance, the Company will designate the leave of absence due to an on-the-job injury as FMLA. The leave of absence will begin to run from the beginning of the absence caused by the on-the-job injury and will run simultaneously with any worker’s compensation benefits that also may be provided the employee.
Employees may also qualify for Short-Term Disability benefits while on FMLA. Although an employee may receive Short-Term Disability benefits, the leave is still considered and counted as FMLA.
(2) Qualifying Exigencies: Qualifying exigencies which may qualify for FMLA include: (1) short-notice deployment; (2) military events and related activities; (3) non-routine childcare and school activities; (4) non- routine financial and legal arrangements; (5) related counseling; (6) rest and recuperation; (7) post-deployment activities; and (8) additional qualifying activities.
(3) Covered service member: A covered service member is a current member of the Armed Forces, including a member of the National Guard or Reserves, who has a serious injury or illness incurred in the line of duty on active duty which may render the service member medically unfit to perform his duties for which he is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation or therapy; or is in outpatient status; or is on the temporary disability retired list.
Duration of Leave
(1) In General – Except in cases of Service member Family Leave, eligible employees are entitled to a total of 12 weeks of FMLA during any “rolling backward” 12-month period (measured backward from the date the FMLA sought by the employee would begin).
(2) Service member Family Leave – Eligible employees are entitled to a total of 26 weeks of leave in a single 12-month period. This 12-month period begins on the first day an eligible employee takes FMLA to care for a covered service member and ends 12 months after that date. No more than a total of 26 weeks of all FMLA types of leave may be taken in a single 12-month period.
(3) Married Employee Couples – In cases where both husband and wife work for the Company, they will be eligible for a combined total of 12 weeks of FMLA for the birth or placement of a child, or to care for a parent with a serious health condition (not parent-in-law). Similarly, if both husband and wife work for the Company, they will be eligible for a combined total of 26 weeks of leave for Service member Family Leave or for Service member Family Leave combined with any other type of FMLA.
(4) Intermittent Leave or Reduced Work Schedule Leave – Qualifying Military Exigency Leave may be taken intermittently, in separate blocks of time (no less than one hour), or on the basis of a reduced leave schedule under which an employee’s usual working hours each day or each week are reduced. When medically necessary, other types of FMLA may also be taken intermittently, in separate blocks of time (no less than one hour), or on the basis of a reduced leave schedule under which an employee’s usual working hours each day or each week are reduced. The Company does not grant intermittent or reduced leave schedule FMLA for the birth or placement of a child.
Requests for and Approval of leave
(1) Notice and Scheduling of Leave – Employees must provide their supervisor or Human Resources with at least thirty (30) days notice whenever the need for the leave is foreseeable (such as when the leave is for an expected birth or placement for adoption or for planned medical treatment). For planned medical treatment, employees must consult with the supervisor or Human Resources and make reasonable efforts to schedule the treatment so as to minimize the impact of the employee’s absence on the operations of the Company and their fellow employees. In cases where the need for leave cannot be anticipated thirty (30) days in advance, the employee must give notice of the need for leave as soon as practicable (meaning the same or next business day).
Failure to give proper notice of the need for FMLA may result in delay of the commencement of leave, and may result in the absences counting against the employee for attendance and/or disciplinary action purposes.
Employees are also expected to comply with the Company’s or his/her department’s normal call-in procedures when reporting absences, including, but not limited to, absences which are covered by the FMLA.
Employees must contact their supervisor or Human Resources every Friday during FMLA.
Employees also must inform the Company if the requested leave is for a reason for which FMLA leave was previously taken or certified.
FMLA leave will not be granted so that an employee can work or seek employment with any other entity, including self-employment. In addition, it is the Company’s policy that employees are prohibited from working any supplemental/secondary job, including a second job within the Company, during any type of leave, including, but not limited to, FMLA leave, intermittent FMLA leave and non-FMLA medical leave.
(2) Documentation – The Company requires that employees provide documentation to support the need for FMLA leave. Employees must obtain these documents from the supervisor or Human Resources. FMLA for a serious health condition will require the employee to submit a completed health care provider certification within 15 calendar days. For Service member Family Leave requests, we will also accept invitational travel orders (ITOs) or invitational travel authorizations (ITAs) issued by the Department of Defense.
Failure to provide the required medical certifications may result in denial of FMLA or other leave, automatic re-designation of the leave as other than FMLA, or treatment of the absence in accordance with the attendance/disciplinary policy.
In the case of Qualifying Military Exigency Leave, a copy of your family member’s active duty orders and documentation of the qualifying exigency will be required.
a. Eligibility Notice – We will generally notify you of your eligibility to take FMLA Leave. If you are not eligible, we will tell you why.
b. Designation Notice – Once we have determined whether your leave qualifies as FMLA, we will notify you of our determination with a Designation Notice.
c. Recertification – The Company will request medical recertification of the serious health condition in accordance with the FMLA statute or regulations. We may also provide your health care provider with information about your attendance and ask the provider to evaluate whether your attendance pattern is consistent with the need to be absent for the condition in question.
d. Second and Third Opinions – The Company may also require the employee to obtain a second opinion and third opinion as to the medical condition. We will let you know if such is required.
e. Employee Notices During Leave – During FMLA leave employees must contact their supervisor or Human Resources every other Friday to discuss the employee’s leave status and intent to return to work.
Benefit Participation While on Leave
An employee on approved Family and Medical Leave may continue group health insurance coverage during the leave by paying the employee’s normal share of the cost of such coverage during the leave on or before the date when payroll deductions for such costs would normally be made. Failure to pay the employee’s share of the premium when due will result in elimination of coverage after thirty (30) days. In addition, should the Company make any premium payments on the employee’s behalf, the employee must reimburse the Company for the entire amount.
Use of Available Paid Time Off
An employee must use any available paid time off, such as vacation, sick time, or personal time off, as a part of any unpaid qualified FMLA. Employees are only required to use available paid time off if the employee’s absence would otherwise qualify for benefits pursuant to the terms of the applicable policies.
Crediting of Benefits While on Leave
Benefits such as sick pay and vacation do not accrue for employees who are out on unpaid leave. Similarly, employees do not receive holiday pay for holidays that occur while the employee is on unpaid leave.
Reinstatement Following Leave
(1) Request for Reinstatement – An employee returning from FMLA for his/her own serious health condition should notify his/her supervisor of availability immediately upon being released to return to work by the employee’s health care provider. Failure to do so within two (2) working days of release to work may subject an employee to disciplinary action. The employee should also provide the Company with a certification from the health care provider confirming the employee’s fitness to return to his/her normal duties or identify any specific limitations placed on the employee as to performing his/her job duties. Failure to provide a requested fitness-for-duty certification may result in denial of reinstatement until this certification is provided. An employee desiring to return from FMLA leave prior to the date the leave was due to expire, must also give written notice to his/her supervisor of the desire to return to work at least two (2) working days, prior to the desired return date.
(2) Reinstatement – An employee returning from FMLA will normally be reinstated to the position held by the employee at the time the leave commenced or to an equivalent position. However, an employee returning from FMLA leave will have no greater right to employment or reinstatement to a specific position than an employee who had been continuously employed.
(3) Questions and Forms: Should an employee have any questions about the FMLA, he or she should consult with the supervisor or Human Resources.
An employee may be required to complete forms other than those described above to be eligible to take FMLA leave; therefore, the employee should see his or her supervisor or Human Resources as soon as he or she becomes aware FMLA leave will be needed.