Incorporate the New FMLA Regulations Into Your Company Policies
From Tips and Steps
New FMLA( Family and Medical Leave Act) regulations came into effect this year. Both your managers and employees need to be informed and held accountable for the changes. Listed below are some easy ways you can incorporate the new FMLA regulations into your policy, stay legally compliant, and spread the message about all of the new FMLA benefits to your employees.
Describe the notice requirements for the three types of leave:
Foreseeable Leave(pregnancy, scheduled surgery, etc)=30 days notice
Foreseeable Leave less than 30 days( immediate but non-emergency surgery, for example-exploratory surgery for cancer)=as much time as possible
Unforeseeable Leave(emergency)-"As soon as practicable", the same day or next business day
Describe in detail the need for employees to let their managers know that their absence is FMLA-related leave leave.
There is an obligation on the employee’s part to identify their need for an absence as FMLA leave when they're taking one of those intermittent days for something that was previously approved. Tell that employee, “You must let me know when you're taking a subsequent intermittent absence for FMLA-covered reasons and that it's for the condition you got permission for some months ago. Letting us know the absence is FMLA-covered is critical.” There's a requirement to consult with the employer concerning scheduling the planned medical treatment.
List in detail your "customary and usual notice procedure" for absence notification and explain what does that really mean under FMLA regulations?
Put in your FMLA policy, excepting emergency circumstances; that you're expected to comply with our regular call out policy or our absence occurrence policy Include a sentence in there that says to employees that calling in sick is not sufficient notice to us that you need an FMLA qualifying day.
Communicate the new notice features in the FMLA regulations.
Don't just say, “Well, I'm going to meet my notice obligation by just printing that FMLA poster out and distributing it to my employees in my handbook” which probably is technical compliance. Remember some of the better language - the more favorable language for you-is not in that poster. It's important for you to take these concepts and incorporate it into your more detailed policy and communicate the key points to your employees through multiple channels like e-mail, pay day communications and employee briefings.
Describe the new employee notice obligations
Let employees know they need to designate the day as FMLA-related
Make sure they understand your "customary and usual notice procedure" for absence notification
Don't copy the FMLA poster verbatim into your policy. Make sure you include the points you need.