When you are sick with a serious medical condition, you may need to take time off work. Certain larger employers in the District of Columbia are supposed to provide ill employees with medical leave under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Employees of smaller companies, however, can obtain leave and receive protection under the D.C. medical leave law, assuming they are eligible. If you are concerned about obtaining medical leave, you should discuss your situation with experienced Washington D.C. lawyer Matthew Famiglietti. Failure to provide you with leave to which you were entitled may be grounds for a lawsuit.Family and Medical Leave Act
Federal law requires certain Washington D.C. employers to provide employees with unpaid job-protected leave for a serious medical condition, along with other specified reasons. The FMLA applies only to those companies that have at least 50 employees. The FMLA allows for a maximum of 12 weeks of unpaid leave if our lawyer can show you have medical condition and meet other criteria.
You may be eligible to get job-protected leave under the federal law if:
- You worked for the employer for at least a year.
- You worked at least 1250 hours in the 12 months before the leave you requested.
- You work at a jobsite where the employer has at least 50 employees within a radius of 75 miles.
Moreover, you can obtain a maximum of 26 weeks of leave to take care of a family member who suffered a serious illness or injury while serving on active military duty.
You are usually entitled to be reinstated to the same or an equivalent position after you take FMLA leave. Moreover, you are entitled to keep receiving health insurance coverage while you're on leave at the same cost as when you were working for your covered employer.
We may be able to pursue damages on your behalf if you were entitled to FMLA leave but were denied it. You should not be discriminated against by your employer because you asked for and took legitimate FMLA leave. And you should not face retaliation.Attorney for Damages for Denial Under the Washington D.C. Medical Leave Law
Your D.C. employer may also need to provide you with medical leave under local law under certain circumstances. Your employer would be covered by the local law if it has at least 20 employees and you meet eligibility requirements. We can show you are eligible under the D.C. Family Medical Leave Act if you worked for your employer for at least a year and you worked 1000 hours in the 12 months before you took leave.
The D.C. law entitles you to a maximum of 16 weeks leave for a 24-month period for a reason that is covered. These reasons include caring for a family member with a serious health condition, giving birth to a child, or serious medical conditions that impair your work performance.
The 16 weeks you may take to care for your family member is distinct from the 16 weeks you should receive for your own serious health conditions. In total, therefore, you can qualify for up to 32 weeks of leave under the D.C. law in a particular 24-month period. Your employer can’t require you to use paid leave while you’re on leave under the D.C. law, unlike the federal FMLA.
Your employer is required to allow you to take up to 16 weeks of unpaid family leave and 16 weeks of unpaid medical leave to use in any year. The medical leave would be for your own serious medical condition. The leave can be used for your own mental or physical illness, medical condition, or injury. It can also be used for preventative medical care, a diagnosis, or other medical care.
However, you can also take paid leave for various reasons such as to care for your own serious medical condition for two weeks. You can take paid leave to care for a family member who has a serious medical condition. You should also be provided with paid leave for any covered reason specified in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).
If you were denied leave to which you were entitled under D.C. law, you can seek relief in a lawsuit for damages. Our attorney may be able to hold your employer liable for any wages or income, benefits, medical expenses, and consequential damages arising out of the violation of the D.C. law. The consequential damages could be 3 times the earnings you lost.Hire Our Washington D.C. Firm to Represent You
If you are concerned that you have been unfairly denied medical leave under the FMLA or the Washington D.C. law, you should talk to our principal Matthew T. Famiglietti. Mr. Famiglietti represents employees in D.C., Virginia, and Maryland. Fill out our online form or call the Law Office of Matthew T. Famiglietti at (202) 669-5880.
Please note, there is a consultation fee for any calls related to this practice area.