Family & Medical Leaves
Under certain circumstances, employees have the legal right to take medical leaves to care for their own pregnancy, adoption, or serious health condition, or family leaves to care for a child, parent or spouse with a serious health condition. Employees who are eligible to take a family or medical leave may be legally entitled to as much as twelve weeks of leave per year. Likewise, under certain circumstance, New Jersey employees may be entitled to as much as 12 weeks of family leave and 12 weeks of medical leave.
At the end of a family or medical leave, an employee is generally entitled to return to either his or her former position or an equivalent one. However, unless a company has a policy that provides otherwise, family and medical leaves are unpaid.
To take a family or medical leave, an employee must give reasonable advance notice of his or her need for the leave. How much notice is required varies depending on the reason why he or she is taking the leave.
There are many exceptions and restrictions on the right to take family and medical leaves. For example, relatively small companies (ones with fewer than 50 employees) are exempt, in some instances the employee must have worked for their current employer for one year, and in other situations employees must meet minimum hour requirements.
The family and medical leave laws are complex, and employers and employees are often confused about their rights. If you want to learn about your rights under the FMLA or the New Jersey Family Leave Act, or if you believe you have been fired, harassed, or denied your right to a family or medical leave, then you should contact one of our employment lawyers.