COVID-19/work/FMLA

Had an “town hall” meeting after work yesterday with a member of management explaining the new procedures that take effect today.

One of the things that was discussed was what happens if the schools are closed (they are) and your daycare also closes up. The company’s position is that you will be eligible for FMLA to take care of your child but they don’t have all details on how/what/when to be qualified.

Today they clarified the conditions that you would be able miss work under FMLA. Must have a child/children under 14. You are not able to find someone to stay at your house and do childcare. Your spouse, significant other, or the child’s other parent can not alter their schedule to accommodate your work schedule to provide child care. And the kicker…you are unable to switch jobs and/or shifts within the company to accommodate your spouse, significant other, or the child’s other parent’s work schedule. Basically you need to be a single parent with no family nearby in order to be eligible. The good news is that they are not required to pay wages for the first 14 days but our company will, so no missed income and will be re-evaluated every 14 days after.

Now the part I get a kick out of. 6 people out of the 25 or so in my department called in today. These are know “system scammers” who have taken advantage of the companies generosity in the past just to get out of work. If and when (a big IF) they come back to work they will be surprised their 2 week vacation isn’t happening and their “paid” days off won’t be paid.

These employees should have some sort of contact with whoever their supervisor is. You can’t just go out on FMLA without telling anyone and if you don’t show up to work without notice it’s job abandonment. So none of them should be surprised if they take unpaid leave.

They had to call in and our supervisor knew they were gone. That is what I find funny, they think they had a free paid day(s) off but in reality it will count as a missed work day and because they didn’t give 3 days notice it can’t be used as vacation day and will probably be counted as a demerit. They also probably don’t realize the lengthy process it takes to get approved for FMLA leave and with the clarified policy few, if any, will be approved for leave.

First of all the FMLA applies to, all public and private elementary and secondary schools, and companies with 50 or more employees. These employers must provide an eligible employee with up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave each year for any of the following reasons:

For the birth and care of the newborn child of an employee

For placement with the employee of a child for adoption or foster care

To care for an immediate family member (i.e., spouse, child, or parent) with a serious health condition

To take medical leave when the employee is unable to work because of a serious health condition.

Employees are eligible for leave if they have worked for their employer at least 12 months, at least 1,250 hours over the past 12 months, and work at a location where the company employs 50 or more employees within 75 miles.

The other info in the OP seems to be company generated benefits OR possibly state benefit or perhaps a CBA.

The company decides your FMLA leave, not you. It can be applied retroactively and in some cases the person taking it doesn’t need to file for it, if it should’ve been obvious to the employer the need (this was decided by courts in some federal districts).

There is much more to go into, I just wanted to interject this to make sure someone who is reading the OP does not assume this is applicable to them.