The intersection of different employment laws can create confusion for employers. In fact, sometimes one law can potentially trigger another.

Whether it’s a personal sabbatical, a family medical issue, or an extended vacation, sometimes employees will vacate their usual job roles for an extended period under allowable circumstances. 

When employees fail to show up for work and provide no notice, employers have no choice but to separate and replace them; but not all situations are so clear cut. For example, Sue may have made arrangements for intermittent leave under the FMLA (Family and Medical Leave Act) to attend physical therapy or counseling, but she doesn’t always provide sufficient (or any) advance notice. Complicating the situation, she may have strained relationships with colleagues or supervisors stemming from her absences, and that could raise the specter of harassment or a hostile work environment. How can a business protect itself, navigate this regulatory minefield, and do the right thing?

The Family Medical Leave Act requires employers to provide up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave during a 12-month period to any eligible employee in order to deal with a serious health condition, to care for a family member with a serious health condition, or for the birth of a child or placement of an adopted or foster child. Follow these steps to ensure FMLA compliance.

Work within government regulations:

Employers are allowed to place reasonable restrictions on employees requesting FMLA leave, such as:

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