Is leaving a job considered to be “voluntary termination” if your employer will not accommodate health restrictions?

UPDATED: Jul 16, 2010

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Is leaving a job considered to be “voluntary termination” if your employer will not accommodate health restrictions?

I have been off work with a big company for 2 months for a back injury and high risk pregnancy. When I was taken off work my doctor put me on light restrictions but I was able to work. My employer said that they could not accommodate the restrictions and I would have to continue to be off work. Monday I received a letter from corporate saying that I did not qualify for FMLA and I needed to return to work by this coming Monday or I would be “voluntarily terminated”. I was released to work with no physical restrictions but 4 hour shifts instead of 6 hours but they say no. Am I still quitting if I don’t go in because they say I can’t?

Asked on July 16, 2010 under Employment Labor Law, Michigan


M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 12 years ago | Contributor

It sounds to me like you have a case for employment discrimination based upon your being pregnant.  Under FMLA ”eligible” employees to take off up to t 12 work weeks in any 12 month period for the birth or adoption of a child, t to care for a family member, or if the employee themselves has serious health t condition.  An “eligible” t employee is an employee who has been employed by the employer for a least t 12 months and worked at least 1,250 hours. The 12 months do not need to be t consecutive. You are only an “eligible” employee if your employer t employs 50 or more employees within 75 miles of the worksite.  FMLA can be taken on t an intermittent basis allowing the employee to work on a less than full-time t schedule. Do you qualify?  Seek help from an attorney in your area as soon as possible.  Good luck.

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