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FML Frequent Questions

What is the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)?

Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) enacted in 1993 by Congress is a federal law to help employees balance their work and family lives by allowing them to leave for certain qualifying condition. Time off work is provided for up to 12 work weeks in a 12 month period for a qualifying event for eligible College employees.

Who is eligible to take FMLA?

CSCC employees (faculty, staff, regular or temporary and some part-time employees) who have been employed by the College for at least 12 months (time may not necessarily be consecutively but within the last seven years) AND who have worked for at least 1250 hours in the previous 12 month period.

What is a qualifying event?

  • The birth of a child and the care of the newborn child.
  • The placement of a child with the employee for adoption or foster care.
  • To care for an immediate family member of the employee who has a serious health condition.
  • A serious health condition of the employee that makes the employee unable to perform the essential functions of the job.
**FML also recognizes several Military Leave Entitlements.

What qualifies as a serious health condition as defined under FMLA?

FMLA defines a serious health condition as an illness, injury, impairment, or a physical or mental condition that involves either inpatient care in a hospital, hospice or residential care facility OR continuing treatment by a health care provider. Any absence involving hospitalization qualifies as a serious health condition.

What does continuing treatment mean?

  • A period of incapacity which lasts more than three consecutive calendar days (not necessarily work days) AND involves either:
    • Treatment two or more times by a health care provider within the first 30 days, of the first day of incapacity; OR
    • Treatment by a health care provider at least one time which results in a regimen of continuing treatment (i.e., prescription medication, physical therapy, dialysis, chemotherapy, radiation, etc.)
      (Note: Over the counter medications do not count as a regimen of treatment even if they are recommended by a health care provider.)
  • Any period of incapacity due to pregnancy or for prenatal care whether or not health care provider services are used.
  • Any period of incapacity or treatment due to a chronic serious health condition. A chronic serious health condition is one which:
    • Requires periodic visits for treatment (defined as at least twice a year).
    • Continues over an extended period of time.
    • May cause episodic rather than continuing period of incapacity (i.e., asthma, diabetes, epilepsy, migraine, etc.)
  • A period of incapacity which is permanent or long term due to a condition for which treatment may not be effective (i.e. Alzheimer’s disease, serve stroke, or the terminal stages of a disease).
  • Any period of absence to receive multiple treatments by a health care provider for restorative surgery after an accident or injury, or for a condition that would likely result in a period of incapacity lasting more than three consecutive calendar days in the absence of medical intervention or treatment such as cancer chemotherapy, radiation, etc.) Or severe arthritis physical therapy), or kidney disease (dialysis).

What type of illnesses are not covered under FMLA?

Family and Medical Leave is not intended to cover short term conditions for which treatment and recovery are very brief (i.e., colds, flu, etc.). Treatment does not include routine physical exams, eye exams, or dental exams. Over the counter medications are not considered a regimen of treatment.

Who is an approved health care provider under FMLA?

A doctor of medicine or osteopathy, podiatrist, dentist, clinical psychologist, optometrist, chiropractor, nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, physician assistant, licensed clinical social worker or Christian Science practitioner listed with the First Church of Christ, Scientist in Boston, Massachusetts.

What is the definition of “Immediate Family Member” under FMLA?

CSCC policy defines Immediate Family: Parent, sibling, grandparent, child, spouse, parents-in –law, children-in-law, sibling-in-law, grandchild, stepparents, stepchildren, a legal guardian or other person who stands in the place of a parent, other persons residing in the home of the employee, or a domestic partner. To use FML for a domestic partner who has a serious health condition, a completed and notarized Affidavit of Domestic Partnership form must be on file with the Human Resources Department.
Definition of Child- biological, adopted, or foster son or daughter, a stepson or stepdaughter, a legal ward or a son or daughter of a person standing in loco parentis who is either under 18 years of age or who is 18 or over but is incapable of self-care due to a mental or physical disability as defined under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

What is intermittent leave?

Intermittent leave is FML leave taken in separate blocks of time due to a single qualifying event.

What is reduced schedule leave?

A reduced schedule leave is leave that reduces an employee’s usual number of working hours per work week, or hours per workday.

May an employee take intermittent or reduced schedule leave for prenatal care?

Yes, because prenatal care is determined to be a serious health condition under the FML definition. In fact, all prenatal physician visits taken during working hours must be reported as FML.

May an employee take intermittent or reduced schedule leave for postnatal care?

Yes. Leave taken for childbirth or placement may be taken intermittently or on a reduced schedule, with the approval of the supervisor. Leave taken for childbirth on an intermittent or reduced schedule shall be taken after the presumed six-week recovery period. In addition, leave for childbirth, foster care or adoption must be taken within 12 months of the date of the birth or placement of the child.

May a father of a newborn child take FMLA too?

Yes. The father may take FML for the birth of a child and to care for that child or for the placement of a child for adoption or foster care.

Who determines whether leave qualifies under FMLA?

MetLife is the administrator of FMLA and in conjunction with information provided by the College they will determine whether an employee meets eligibility standards for taking Family Medical Leave. An employee will be required to answer questions about their leave when they contact MetLife to setup an initial claim for time off work. After completing this initial intake process MetLife will mail out a package of information to the employee’s home address and the forms will need to completed by the appropriate health care provider in order for MetLife to determine whether or not Family and Medical Leave is appropriate. The employee cannot choose to decline taking FML when there is a qualifying event.

Is advance notice required to take FMLA?

Yes, as outlined in policy. Advance notice of 30 days is required if the need is foreseeable based on expected birth, placement for adoption or foster care, planned medical treatment for a serious health condition of the employee or family member, or planned medical treatment for a serious injury or illness of a covered service member. Unless the condition is an emergency and it is impossible to give 30 days’ notice, which event, notice must be given as soon as possible.

How do I apply for FMLA?

Call MetLife at 1-800-330-4941