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FMLA/STD Employee Job Elimination

Can the company eliminate a director position while the employee is on FMLA/STD?

The federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) entitles covered, eligible employees to take unpaid, job-protected leave for specified family and medical reasons. Short term disability (STD) is a wage replacement program for injured employees. It doesn’t necessarily provide job reinstatement rights.

Though an employee has job protection during FMLA leave, the employee is not exempt from job elimination. Under the FMLA, an employee has the same rights, no greater, to job reinstatement as if the employee had been continuously employed. Meaning, if the employee would’ve been laid off if he was not on leave then he can be laid off while on leave.

The employer bears the burden of proving that the layoff would’ve occurred regardless of the leave. Thus, employers must have a valid business reason for the layoff and have clear documentation proving the decision.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014 at 8:29 pm and is filed under
Human Resources Management, Labor Laws, Termination.
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