Family And Medical Leave Act
Basic Leave Entitlement
Premier fully complies with the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA). FMLA requires covered employers to provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave to eligible employees for the following reasons:
- For incapacity due to pregnancy, prenatal medical care or child birth;
- To care for the employee’s child after birth, or placement for adoption or foster care;
- To care for the employee’s spouse, son or daughter, or parent, who has a serious health condition; or
- For a serious health condition that makes the employee unable to perform the employee’s job.
The leave year will be a “rolling” 12-month period measured backward from the date an employee uses FML. Thus, each time an employee takes FML, the remaining leave entitlement is the balance of 12 weeks not used in the preceding 12 months.
Military Family Leave Entitlements
Eligible employees with a spouse, son, daughter, or parent on active duty or call to active duty status in the National Guard or Reserves in support of a contingency operation may use their 12-week leave entitlement to address certain qualifying exigencies. Qualifying exigencies may include attending certain military events, arranging for alternative childcare, addressing certain financial and legal arrangements, attending certain counseling sessions, and attending post-deployment reintegration briefings.
FMLA also includes a special leave entitlement that permits eligible employees to take up to 26 weeks of leave to care for a covered servicemember during a single 12- month period. A covered servicemember 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 that may render the servicemember medically unfit to perform his or her duties for which the servicemember is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation, or therapy; or is in outpatient status; or is on the temporary disability retired list.
Benefits and Protections
Use of FMLA leave will not result in the loss of any employment benefit that accrued prior to the start of an employee’s leave.
The Company will maintain group health insurance for employees on FML whenever such insurance was provided before the leave was taken, and coverage will be on the same terms as if the employee had continued to work. Where applicable, employees should make arrangements to pay for their share of health insurance premiums while on leave. If paid leave is used for any portion of the family or medical leave, the employee’s portion of the premiums will be deducted from the employee’s paycheck under the same terms and conditions which existed before the leave began. At the time an employee begins unpaid family or medical leave, he/she shall receive written and/or email instructions detailing the time and manner in which the employee’s portion of the premiums are to be paid by the employee.
The Company may recover from an employee who fails to return to work at the end of the leave health insurance premiums it has paid during a period of unpaid FML unless failure to return is due to:
- The continuation, recurrence, or onset of a serious health condition which would have entitled the employee to FML or;
- Other circumstances beyond the employee’s control.
An employee who returns to work for at least 30 days is deemed to have “returned” to work. Upon return from FML, the Company will restore the employee to his or her original job, or to an equivalent job with equivalent pay, benefits, and other employment terms and conditions. However, the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) does not entitle a restored employee to any more rights, benefits, or employment beyond that to which the employee would have been entitled had the employee not taken FML.
Employees are eligible if they have worked for at least one year, for 1,250 hours over the previous 12 months.
Definition of Serious Health Condition
A serious health condition is an illness, injury, impairment, or physical or mental condition that involves either an overnight stay in a medical care facility, or continuing treatment by a health care provider for a condition that 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 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 continuing treatment.
Leave for birth or placement for adoption or foster care must commence within 12 months of the birth or placement. Leave may begin before the actual placement or adoption of a child if an absence from work is required for the placement for adoption or foster care to proceed. An expectant mother may take leave before the birth of the child for prenatal care or if her condition makes her unable to work.
Use of Leave
An employee does not need to use this leave entitlement in one block. Leave can be taken intermittently or on a reduced leave schedule when medically necessary. Employees must make reasonable efforts to schedule leave for planned medical treatment so as not to unduly disrupt the employer’s operations. Leave due to qualifying exigencies may also be taken on an intermittent basis.
Substitution of Paid Leave for Unpaid Leave
Employees may choose or the company may require use of accrued paid leave while taking FMLA leave. In order to use paid leave for FMLA leave, employees must comply with the company’s normal paid leave policies.
Employees must provide 30 days advance notice of the need to take FMLA leave when the need is foreseeable. When 30 days notice is not possible, the employee must provide notice as soon as practicable and must comply with the company’s normal call-in procedures. Employees must provide sufficient information for the company to determine if the leave may qualify for FMLA protection and the anticipated timing and duration of the leave. Sufficient information may include that the employee is unable to perform job functions, the family member is unable to perform daily activities, the need for hospitalization or continuing treatment by a health care provider, or circumstances supporting the need for military family leave. Employees also must inform the company if the requested leave is for a reason for which FMLA leave was previously taken or certified. Employees also may be required to provide a certification and periodic recertification supporting the need for leave.
The Company will inform employees requesting leave whether they are eligible under FMLA. If they are, the notice will specify any additional information required as well as the employees’ rights and responsibilities. If they are not eligible, the company will provide a reason for the ineligibility.
The Company will inform employees if leave will be designated as FMLA protected and the amount of leave counted against the employee’s leave entitlement. If the company determines that the leave is not FMLA-protected, the employee will be notified.
Unlawful Acts by Employers
FMLA makes it unlawful for any employer to:
- Interfere with, restrain, or deny the exercise of any right provided under FMLA;
- Discharge or discriminate against any person for opposing any practice made unlawful by FMLA or for involvement in any proceeding under or relating to FMLA.
An employee may file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Labor or may bring a private lawsuit against an employer.
FMLA does not affect any Federal or State law prohibiting discrimination, or supersede any State or local law or collective bargaining agreement which provides greater family or medical leave rights.
FMLA section 109 (29 U.S.C. § 2619) requires FMLA covered employers to post the text of this
notice. Regulations 29 C.F.R. § 825.300(a) may require additional disclosures.