Is it legal to deny FMLA to an employee if a spouse was involved in an accident?

UPDATED: Jun 24, 2015

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Is it legal to deny FMLA to an employee if a spouse was involved in an accident?

Asked on June 24, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, Alabama


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 7 years ago | Contributor

You may take FMLA leave in order to care for a spouse with a serious medical conditon: so the first question is, is it necessary for the employee to take leave to care for his/her spouse, or is it just that the employee would *like* to take leave? Only if necessary--e.g. the employee has to stay home to care for him/her, or needs time to take him/her to doctors, etc.--is the employee entitled to leave.

Second, is the employee qualified for FMLA leave? That is, has worked for 1,250 or more hours in the past year and has worked a year or more total (doesn't need to be in row or consecutive) for this employer?

Third, is this employer and this location covered, which means, does this employer have at least 50 employees who are located/work within a 75-mile radius.

If the leave is necessary, the employee is eligible, and this employer/location is covered, then unpaid leave, up to 12 weeks, must be granted.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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