Login

Member Portal Join Email List  |   Events  |   BLOG  |   VLOG

Q&A: How do I track FMLA leave?

Question:

How do I track FMLA leave?

Answer from Sarah, PHR, SHRM-CP:

After determining that a leave is covered by FMLA, you should begin tracking time against the 12-week entitlement. You’ll track this time in whole-week increments if the need for leave is continuous. Each week missed will be counted as 1/12th of their total entitlement.

If the employee needs intermittent leave or reduced hours, you’ll need to determine how many hours they are entitled to in total and record the time they miss on an hour-by-hour basis. To do so, you would take the number of hours that an employee regularly works in a week and multiply it by 12. For instance, if an employee is regularly scheduled to work 40 hours per week, their 12-week FMLA entitlement would be 480 hours (40 x 12 = 480). If they worked 30 hours per week, their 12-week FMLA entitlement would be 360 hours (30 x 12 = 360). If their hours fluctuate, you should go back twelve months from the start of their leave and calculate their weekly average, then multiply that number by 12.

If an employee is missing time on an intermittent basis that has not been established ahead of time (e.g. they occasionally suffer from migraines versus having a standing appointment for chemotherapy each Tuesday), make sure they know that they need to notify you when they are taking time off for an FMLA-qualifying reason. This is necessary so that you can track that time (a benefit to you) and treat it as protected (a benefit to the employee).

If an employee says that they need to miss more time than is indicated on their current doctor’s certification, you should request updated paperwork to cover additional time missed. Please note: even if you trust this employee, you might not trust the next, and you want to ensure you’re applying the same standards across the board to avoid claims of discrimination—particularly when a disability of some kind is already in play.

 Sign up to get advice from an HR Pro!

Sarah has extensive Human Resources experience in the legal, software, security and property preservation industries. She has a Business Communications degree from Villa Julie College (now Stevenson University) and a master’s certificate in Human Resources Management and a Strategic Organizational Leadership certification from Villa Nova University. Sarah is also a member of the National Society of Human Resources Management and has managed the HR function for small startup companies to mid-sized/large organizations.

Related Blogs

09 Aug 2018
Q&A: We’re thinking of adding a dress code to our handbook. What should we consider?
Question: We’re thinking of adding a dress code to our handbook. What should we consider? Answer from Kara, JD, SPHR: As with any policy, the big thing to keep in...
02 Aug 2018
Q&A: We’ve seen a lot of turnovers lately. Do you have any tips for increasing retention?
Question: We’ve seen a lot of turnovers lately. Do you have any tips for increasing retention? Answer from Kyle, PHR: Employee retention is one of the most difficult and expensive...
26 Jul 2018
Q&A: Question: An employee injured off the job would like to return to work, but we’re concerned about her safety and her ability to do the job…
Question: An employee injured off the job would like to return to work, but we’re concerned about her safety and her ability to do the job. How should we proceed?...
Subscribe For Updates

Subscribe For Updates

Get more info on our latest course, Side Hustle Blueprint. Human Resources is your JOB. Entrepreneurship is your DREAM. 

You're all set! Check your email NOW.