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Does FMLA still apply in Arizona?

A Scottsdale woman is suing her former employer after they allegedly fired her for exercising her rights under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). According the woman, her employer was repeatedly uncooperative when she exercised her rights to medical leave, before ultimately firing her, possibly illegally. Her fight clearly demonstrates the great value of employee protections granted under FMLA.

What is in FMLA?

FMLA contains some of our nation's most important protections for employees. Under FMLA, an employee can demand a certain amount of time away from work, as long as the employee and the reason for requesting leave both meet certain qualifications. Some qualifying circumstances include:

  • Employees suffering serious illness that keeps them from work
  • Employees who need time off to care for an immediate family member
  • Employees who give birth to a child or adopt a child

How does FMLA affect employers?

An employer cannot refuse qualifying leave requested under FMLA, and may not retaliate against the employee. However, the employer is not obligated to pay the employee during the term of the leave.

An employer must make accommodations for the employee's request for leave if all of the qualifications are met. If the employer retaliates against the employee, they face significant punishment from the court.

What if my employer won't cooperate with my request?

If you face trouble compelling your employer to grant your requested FMLA leave, or if you suspect your employer has already retaliated against you, you should consult with an experienced attorney. An attorney's professional guidance can help you fight for fair compensation for your losses and protection of your rights.

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