FMLA

posted 2 years ago in Pregnancy
Member
1686 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

Have you used all of your sick and vacation time up? If you aren’t able to work right now, then it is in your best interest to take FMLA time now so they can’t fire you before you even deliver. As for time off with the baby, maybe HR will work with you situation you till have 12 weeks unpaid but it might be hard for them to guarantee job security. I hope it works out for you!

Member
748 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

My company won’t make me take FMLA until after the baby comes (or until I choose to begin my leave). This is unless, of course, there are issues with the pregnancy that cause me to be out of work sooner (i.e. the need for bed rest or something along those lines). However, since I’m salaried, they are usually very good at working with me when it comes to Doctor’s appointments or needing to leave early if I’m not feeling very well. I generally just make up any extra time that I miss due to those occasions. I also already have built in sick days that I can use so they don’t require me to use FMLA for that.

I’m sorry your work is making you do this. I’d definitely check to see if they have their policy on FMLA written down anywhere so you can see if this is correct or not. Hopefully some other bees will be able to shed some light onto what their companies do as well.

Member
472 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

I wouldn’t start FMLA until you’re on maternity leave or on bed rest.

Member
1686 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

@PrncssDva:  You need to be able to use any available sick or vacation time before you start using FMLA time. Tell HR you will be using your PTO or sick/vacation for your days off/appointments. So they’re making you use unpaid FMLA time off right now for your appointments? FMLA is for when you aren’t able to work…check your handbook and see if they have any reason to be doing this, but it doesn’t sound right to me. 

Member
610 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I’m signing up for FMLA at week 13 just to cover myself bc of my jobs attendance policy.  I wasn’t aware that it eats up the 12 weeks post partum.  Luckily I have scheduled appointments outside of my shift and haven’t had to miss due to symptoms or anything.  That sounds wrong :(

Member
162 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2000

Just for clarification–are you taking any time off now related to your pregnancy? If you’re not, then filling out the FMLA papers now isn’t causing you to lose any of that 12 weeks.

I agree with letting them know that any time you do take off related to your pregnancy will be used as vacation or sick time until you either deliver or run out of sick/vacation time. 

It could be that you’re filling those out now just to have it in place when you do deliver.

Member
500 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2012

I could see them having you “start the clock” for Dr appts having to do with your pregnancy….. but not sick time.  FMLA has to be for the care of a family member.  Not the care of yourself.

I would go talk to HR again and clarify who is TRACKING this time off…. it should ONLY be for times that you take “extra” time or breaks due to your pregnancy / birth of child / nursing  / if the baby gets sick etc when you return to work.

 

Ellegee You don’t use paid time BEFORE FMLA…. you use them at the same time, if you have paid time left.  So, if you have accrued 12 weeks of vacation…. you COULD take all 12 weeks paid AND use your FMLA time.  FMLA just guarantees you the RIGHT to take up to 12 weeks TOTAL and your employer can’t replace you for being gone that much.  FMLA doesn’t have anything to do with using benefit time or pay to get paid for that 12 weeks.

 

And yes….. lots of time people will go “out” early, then stay “out” and max out what they are allowed – the full 12 weeks.  Then 4 months later, but still in the same calendar year their baby gets pnemonia or whatever and they have to be off work for 3 more weeks….. and their employer said they can’t take off another month….. so you want to make sure your goal is not to “max out” your FMLA time with just the birth.  Know that SOME employers will have you use that time for nursing / sick care for the newborn etc.

Member
2825 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

Not sure.  Seems like companies are making their own rules.  My husband put in to take FMLA while I have the baby and to stay home with me.  He asked to start the week before my due date in case I pop by then.  And he asked for just 30 days.  Being a pilot he was worried about being out of the country and me being by myself.  They told him no that he couldn’t start it until my due date! Seriously!?  He has sick time but no vacation time. 

I don’t know all the rules since I’ve been out of HR now for 7 years but you might ask for your companies policy on how to use it.

Member
1686 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2012

@3xaCharm:  As a former HR admin and someone who has taken her own FMLA leave due to delivery/pregnancy, I understand. 

I’m trying to ferret out a reason why OP’s HR might be making her use her time now.  If she’s out of PTO, then they would be within reason but if she has PTO left then she needs to be using that for her appointments/days off rather than using hours/days that she would have preferred to use post-delivery.

OP, looks like you clarified…if you don’t have PTO available to you to use for your time out, then they can ask you to start using FMLA time rather than just “unpaid time off” that could potentially threaten your employment status.

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