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Family Medical Leave Act Update for Covered Employers

June 2016

The United States Department of Labor (DOL) has recently issued a new Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) poster, to replace the prior poster, which was issued in February 2013.  While employers may continue to use the prior FMLA poster to satisfy notice requirements for the time being, employers should begin reviewing their existing FMLA policies immediately.  The FMLA regulations require all covered employers (50 or more employees in 20 or more workweeks in the current or preceding calendar year) with FMLA eligible employees and a written FMLA policy to review that policy in order to ensure that it contains all of the information as the new FMLA poster.  For instance, the new FMLA poster highlights the employee’s responsibilities under the FMLA, as well as the employer’s responsibilities.  The new FMLA poster also provides instructions on how to file a complaint with the DOL or in court and clearly displays the DOL’s contact information.  These are examples of some of the changes to the old FMLA poster.  Employers should rely on the new poster itself for an exhaustive list of information to include within their FMLA policies. Employers may elect to attach a copy of the new poster to their written FMLA policy or to their handbook containing the FMLA policy.  Whichever approach they choose, employers must remember to provide a copy of their FMLA policy to new employees upon hire, whether in hard copy or electronically.  And, all requests for leave by employees should be taken seriously and considered by covered employers to avoid serious fines/damages.

If you have questions about whether your company is a covered employer under the FMLA or whether your existing FMLA policy is compliant with the new FMLA regulations, please contact Naureen Amjad of Pedersen & Houpt’s Employment Practice Group at namjad@pedersenhoupt.com or (312) 261-2273.