To avoid an unwanted gift from the Department of Labor during the holiday season, employers should ensure that they properly administer Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leaves taken during company holidays.
Determining whether company holidays count towards an employee's FMLA entitlement depends on whether the employee takes leave for an entire week or on a lesser intermittent or reduced schedule basis:
- When a holiday occurs within a week in which an employee takes a full week of FMLA leave, the entire week is counted as FMLA leave.
- If, however, an employee is taking FMLA leave in increments less than one week, the holiday is not counted as FMLA leave—unless the employee was scheduled and expected to work on the holiday and used FMLA leave for that day.
- Company shutdowns of one or more weeks where employees are not expected to report to work, such as for the Christmas/New Year holiday, a summer vacation, or a plant closing for retooling or repairs, do not count against an employee's FMLA leave entitlement.
David Mohl, a principal in the Atlanta office of employment law firm Jackson Lewis P.C., focuses on disability, leave and health management issues. © 2018 Jackson Lewis P.C. All rights reserved. Reposted with permission.
Related SHRM Articles:
Watch Out for Wage and Hour Requirements During Holidays, SHRM Online, November 2018
11 Compliance Tips for Working with Seasonal Employees During the Holidays, SHRM Online, November 2018
Visit SHRM's resource center for the Family and Medical Leave Act.