Oklahoma FMLA Attorney

Understanding The Oklahoma Family and Medical Leave Act

family and medical leave actMedical leave from employment can be a necessity sometimes. Major life events such as births, deaths, illness, and the like can mean that an employee may be needed at home to care for a loved one. Often, this means an extended period of time, one longer than an employee’s sick leave will allow. Oklahoma, in conjunction with federal law, provides for family and medical leave under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

Know If Your Employer Must Comply With The Family and Medical Leave Act

In Oklahoma, not all employers must comply with the FMLA. An employer must comply with the FMLA if it has at least 50 employees for at least 20 weeks in the current or previous year. Many small employers may be exempt from compliance with FMLA law. Your employer should be able to provide you with more information. If not, you should consult with an Oklahoma FMLA attorney.

Conditions Under Which an Employee May Take Leave

Once you have determined if the employer must comply with the Act, you must determine if you qualify under the law for the law. Once an employee has worked for an employer for at least one year, has worked at least 1250 hours during the previous year, and if that employee works at a location with at least 50 employees within a 75-mile radius, then that employee may take leave from work to:

  • bond with or care for a new child
  • recover from a serious health condition
  • care for a family member with a serious health condition
  • handle certain matters arising from a family member’s military service, or
  • take care of a family member who has suffered a serious injury during active duty in the military.

How Much Family Leave Can an Employee Take?

A qualifying employee in Oklahoma may take up to 12 weeks of leave during a one-year period. This leave can renew every 12 months, as long as the employee continues to qualify.

The leave is extended to up to 26 weeks in a 12-month period if the employee is caring for a family member who was injured while on active military duty. However, there are some limitations and qualifications for this extended leave. If you think that you might qualify for this type of family leave and have questions, be sure and seek the counsel of an experienced FMLA attorney in Oklahoma.

The leave itself is unpaid, but employees are allowed to keep their medical insurance at the same cost while on leave. Employers must comply with various duties under the law when an employee takes family and medical leave and when the employee returns. If the employer does not do so, the employer can be found to be in violation of the Family and Medical Leave Act.

How Do You Handle A Violation of the Family and Medical Leave Act?

A qualified employee has recourse under the law if the employer fails to honor the leave requested, or discourages the employee from taking the requested leave.

Here are some examples of how an employer may violate the Family and Medical Leave Act:

  • Failing to authorize requested leave
  • Making changes to your work hours or schedule to avoid authorizing your leave
  • Taking disciplinary, discriminatory, or retaliatory action against you for requesting or taking leave you are entitled to
  • Terminating your employer-provided health insurance while you are on leave
  • Failing to reinstate you in the same or equivalent position when you return

These cases are complicated. The FMLA imposes notice and paperwork requirements on both employees and employers. It is important to act quickly and correctly to preserve your rights. There are specific procedural rules and time limitations in these cases. An FMLA attorney in the Tulsa area can help you understand how to resolve your case in your favor. Work with your attorney to protect your rights should you need to in court. With your attorney, you can make sure that all procedural steps are taken to ensure that your right to a court resolution is fully protected.

Free Consultation with a Tulsa Oklahoma Family and Medical Leave Act Attorney

These cases can be procedurally exacting.  You want to make sure that all steps in your claim are taken. It is also important to know when, how, and in what venue any lawsuit must be filed. This requires the help of an experienced attorney. We at the Wirth Law Office are ready to help you. If you would like a free consultation with a Tulsa, Oklahoma lawyer at Wirth Law Office, call 918-879-1681 or toll-free 1-888-Wirth-Law (1-888-947-8452).

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