Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) requires employers to prominently display a number of work-related posters where their employees can easily access and read them. Among the most important of these is the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) poster.
As an employer, it's important to understand which posters you're required to display in your company and why they are federally mandated.
Here's what you need to know about the FMLA poster:
What Is the FMLA?
FMLA stands for Family Medical Leave Act. The FMLA's purpose is to allow covered employees to obtain job-protected leave in the event they must be absent from work due to certain medical or family reasons. The FMLA provisions also guarantee that covered employees retain the same group health insurance benefits while they are taking leave.
Under the Family and Medical Leave Act, eligible employees are entitled to these protections in the following circumstances:
- The birth of—and care for—a newborn child
- The placement of an adopted or foster child within the employee's care
- To care for an immediate relative (spouse, parent, or child) who has a severe health condition
- The employee's own severe medical condition that prohibits the performance of essential job duties
- Any qualifying exigency resulting from the employee's parent, child, or spouse being a covered "active duty" member of the military
- To care for an immediate family member who is a covered service member with a severe injury or illness
How Does the FMLA Affect My Business?
The FMLA does not require you to pay covered employees; however, you must protect employees' jobs until they're able to return to work (within the confines of the law). Pay would be contingent upon available sick, vacation, personal, or paid disability time off.
When an employee returns to work, you must restore the employee to his or her original role, or to an "equivalent" job that retains the same benefits, pay, and other employment conditions. Additionally, you cannot delete any other benefit the employee earned or was entitled to prior to using FMLA simply because he or she was absent on FMLA leave.
FMLA Posting Requirements
All covered employers must display the FMLA poster summarizing employees' rights and explaining how to file complaints. Any private employer with at least 50 employees who worked a minimum of 20 weeks in the current or previous year is considered a covered employer. In addition, all public agencies (state, federal, local, and educational) must adhere to FMLA guidelines.
Posters must be displayed in conspicuous places where all employees and applicants can easily access the information.
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