If a person was hired during my maternity leave and I was terminated soon after, are there grounds for wrongful termination?

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If a person was hired during my maternity leave and I was terminated soon after, are there grounds for wrongful termination?

I provided ample notice for maternity leave and came back after just 4 weeks, durning the time of my leave my company hired and trained 2 managers. After

being back 4 weeks I have been terminated with the other 2 managers filling my position.

Asked on May 30, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Utah

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Is your company covered for Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which means does it have at least 50 employees who all work within a 75-mile radius? If it is, are you eligible for FMLA leave, which means did you work there at least one year and work 1,250 hours in the last 12 months? If your employer is covered and you are eligible, did you request FMLA leave?
If the answer to all three questions is "yes," then you seem to have been fired in violation of the FMLA and should have a case for wrongful termination. Contact the department of labor for bringing a claim under the FMLA and/or speak with an employment law attorney about possibly suing.
But if your company is not covered by FMLA, or you are not eligible for it, or you went out without requesting leave, then the employer was not obligated to hold your job for you and coud terminate you for missing work (or for some other valid, non-leave-related reason). You can only miss work for maternity leave when using FMLA or if you have and use sufficient PTO (paid time off) to cover you absence.


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