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Family Medical Leave

Section: IV. ADSV-315
Approved By: Dr. Pamela J. Transue, 08/02/11
Last Review: 07/11/11
Last Revision: 07/11/11
Prior Revisions: 01/29/04, 07/26/05, 01/28/08
Initial Adoption: Unknown

Policy

FMLA Designation

The College will designate the employee’s request for FMLA leave in accordance with the federal standards.  The College can also designate time missed from work as FMLA leave in accordance with federal standards.

Health Benefits

Employees on leave under FMLA, other than the approved 26 week leave for care of a seriously injured or ill service member, will continue to receive up to 12 weeks of employer paid group medical, dental, basic life, and Accidental Death & Dismemberment (AD&D) insurance while on Family and Medical Leave. The College pays only the employer share of the employee’s health insurance premiums.  Eligible employees who are caring for a seriously ill or injured covered servicemember will continue to receive up to 26 weeks of employer paid group medical, dental, basic life, and Accidental Death & Dismemberment (AD&D) insurance while on Family and Medical Leave.

The employee is required to continue to pay his or her portion of any health insurance premiums that are normally deducted from the employee’s paycheck.  Employees have an obligation to coordinate with the Human Resource Office by the 25th of each month to determine if any premium payments are due, as well as any optional insurance that can be maintained on a “continuation of coverage” basis. 

Job Restoration

Any employee taking FMLA leave will be returned to the same position or to an equivalent position upon his or her return unless the employee would have been terminated in the absence of any leave (e.g. layoff, termination of temporary employment).   The employee’s return may be affected by the ability to safely perform the assigned responsibilities in accordance with a medical provider’s determination.

Confidentiality

All information relating to requests for family and medical leave will be treated in a confidential manner and will be used only to make decisions in regards to the request for FMLA.  FMLA medical information will be maintained in a confidential file and will not be placed in the employee’s personnel file.

Amount/Length of Leave: 

An employee is entitled up to 12 weeks of leave during the “roll forward” period which looks forward at all absences from the first date leave is used with the exception of eligible employees who are caring for a seriously ill or injured covered service member who sustained the illness or injury in the line of duty on active duty who is entitled to receive up to 26 weeks of leave in a single 12-month period to care for the servicemember.

FMLA parental leave may be a combination of vacation, sick leave, personal holiday, compensatory leave, and leave without pay.  Except as provided by WAC or Collective Bargaining Agreement, all leave must be exhausted prior to taking Leave Without Pay for FMLA purposes.  

Spouses employed by the College:  Spouses employed by the College are jointly entitled to a combined total of 12 work-weeks of FMLA leave for the birth and care of the newborn child, for placement of a child for adoption or foster care.  Please see the separate provision for Servicemember Family Leave.

Service Member Family Leave

The aggregate number of workweeks of leave to which both that husband and wife may be entitled under care of a covered servicemember who is seriously ill or injured sustained in the line of duty on active duty is limited to 26 workweeks during the single 12-month period.

Intermittent Leave/Reduced Leave Schedule – Personal medical leave or serious health condition leave covered by the FMLA may be taken intermittently or on a reduced schedule basis when certified as medically necessary. This means taking leave in blocks of time, or by reducing the employee’s normal weekly or daily work schedule.  Examples of intermittent leave would include leave taken on an occasional basis for medical appointments or leave taken for several days at a time spread over a period of six months, such as for medical treatments. 

If FMLA leave is for birth and care of a newborn, or placement for adoption or foster care, use of the intermittent leave is subject to the approval of the College.

In cases where intermittent leave or a reduced schedule has been approved, the College reserves the right to temporarily reassign the employee with no loss of pay or benefits to a different job or to a part time position for the duration of the leave, which better accommodates the employee’s need for leave and the College’s operation. 

Leave for the Birth/Care of Child (FMLA Parental Leave)

Up to 12 weeks of FMLA Parental leave will be granted for the birth of a child of the employee and in order to provide care, or for the placement of a child with the employee for adoption or foster care.   The employee must give at least 30 days notice to the supervisor.  In cases where the child’s birth or placement requires leave to begin in less than 30 days, the employee should give notice to the supervisor as soon as practical.  Up to 12 weeks of parental leave will be designated as FMLA.

Certification Related To FMLA Qualifying Reasons The college requires a FMLA medical certification document to substantiate the employee’s request for medical FMLA leave for the employee or their eligible family member.  The college utilizes the Department of Labor Medical Certification Forms for this purpose.

Certification Related To FMLA Qualifying Reasons

The college may require a request for leave under the military family member FMLA qualifying reason to be supported by a certification issued at a time and in such a manner as approved by the Department of Labor.  If such a certification is prescribed, the employee shall provide in a timely manner, a copy of such a certification that substantiates the request for military family leave.

Purpose

FMLA entitles eligible employees to take unpaid time off work for qualifying job-protected reasons.  FMLA generally entitles eligible employees to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid job-protected leave for specified family and medical reasons. An eligible employee of a covered servicemember who is recovering from a serious illness or injury sustained in the line of duty on active duty is entitled to up to 26 weeks of leave in a single 12-month period to care for the service member. Tacoma Community College designates FMLA leave to be paid, unpaid or a combination of paid and unpaid, depending on the circumstances and as specified in this policy, applicable negotiated agreements, State and Federal law, statutes and regulations.

To Whom Does This Policy Apply

This policy applies to all employees of the College who meet the criteria for eligibility for an FMLA qualifying condition.

References

CFR, Title 29, Chapter 5, Part 825  Codified Federal Regulations – Labor

National Defense Authorization Act FY 2008, Public Law 110-181 Section 585(a)

Definitions

Intermittent Leave - Intermittent leave means leave taken in separate periods of time due to a single illness or injury, rather than for one continuous period of time, and may include leave periods from one hour or more to several weeks.

Twelve Month Period - For purposes of calculating the amount of FMLA leave an eligible employee may request, the term “during any 12 month period” means a rolling twelve month period measured forward from the date an employee begins FMLA leave.

Twenty-six Week Period– For purposes of calculating the amount of FMLA Military Family Leave applicable to qualifying FMLA Condition 6) means a twenty-six work weeks of leave during a 12-month period of care for the servicemember.  The twenty-six workweek total cannot combine with the twelve month period.  Twenty-six workweeks is the maximum amount of FMLA leave in a twelve month period.

Procedure

The employee must request the use of FMLA leave as soon as practicably possible to Human Resources Department. The College can designate time off as Family and Medical Leave in accordance with federal provisions.

Human Resources will provide the Department of Labor FMLA certification form for  the employee to provide to their medical provider.

The College is required to notify the employee or the approval, denial or request for additional information through use of the FMLA designation form.