Employment Law/Fmla


QUESTION: I took my 6 weeks of FMLA Baby bonding time in three 2 week blocks. I was told by my boss and the HR leave manager that i would have to use 40 hours of vacation and sick leave to initiate my leave. And that I would have to use any vacation or float time i had saved. I was told this was because were are not allowed to take time off with no pay. I have used all my time. Last night i read our employee handbook and it says vacation or sick leave is optional during periods  the employee is reciving any kind of income replacement benefits such as paid famiy leave. I told my supervisor i did not want to use my vacation or sick leave but i was told by our director i had no choice. What can i do to right this?  and how do i handel it like who do i speek to? Hr? An attorney? Im not sure what my options are. Have my rights been violated if so can i get my hours back??

ANSWER: Your handbook says that it is an option of you are receiving any type of income replacement benefits.

FMLA is not an income replacement benefit. FMLA is unpaid leave.

We do also require our employees to use Vacation and Sick pay while on FMLA leave as it is unpaid leave.


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QUESTION: Our handbook says its optional to use vacation when using paid family leave or baby bonding time. But my boss told me i had to use all my vacation. Infact i had to save 40 hrs before i could even began my paid family leave.

ANSWER: There is a 1 week (40 hour) waiting period before the benefits begin which is why you had to use the 40 hours up front.

Were you on FMLA or some type of paid leave? FMLA is unpaid leave. If you were on FMLA than you are required to use the vacation to be paid. If you are on some other type of paid leave than you would not be required because you would be paid. Perhaps a short term disability. FMLA is unpaid and not considered paid leave.


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QUESTION: In California we get an extra 6 weeks of paid disability leave its for baby bonding.  Its paid at 55 percent of my wages.but I did get paid from the state.

It is paid leave than and the handbook says on paid leave you have a choice so you should not have had to use your vacation time.  You were paid the vacation time out if you used it. If you got the vacation time back you would have to pay the amount back that were paid to you for the vacation time.

This would probably be something you would have to talk to an attorney about.


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Shirley McAllister, CPP, PHR


I can answer questions about payroll laws and payroll tax laws and Human Resource laws and agencies. I can answer federal payroll and human resource law questions and most states; I do not have a knowledge of the local taxes for cities and counties within the state. If and when I can I will try and send you the website where you can reference the answer and where you can obtain more information as well as a contact number if needed for that particular agency. Some agencies I have worked with are IRS, Department of Labor (federal and state), Revenue Canada (and provincial governments), Inland Revenue, OSHA (0ccupational Safety and Health Administration); Social Security Administration and National Child Support as well as other agencies in Payroll and Human Resources. Some Laws I am particularly familiar with are FLSA (Fair Labor Standards Act), ADA (Americans With Disabilities Act), FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act) COBRA (Consolidated Omnibus Reconciliation Act ) , QDRO's, QMCSO's, and other support orders and garnishments, USERRA (Uniformed Services Employment and Remployment Rights Act,PPA Act (Pension Protection Act of 2006, As well as most other employment type acts. I am also well versed in the Title V Civil Rights Act and the HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act).


30 years in Payroll and Human Resources

SHRM (Society of Human Resources) APA (American Payroll Association) DOLEA (Department of Labor Employers Association) CPA (Canadian Payroll Association) NAPW (National Association of Professional Women) The Mentoring Network

PHR Certification in Human Resources CPP Certification in Payroll in U.S. Payroll Administrator and Payroll Supervisor certification in Canada

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