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The Common FMLA Policy That EEOC Is Investigating

HR Morning (05/04/12) Tim Gould

In many instances when employees have used up all their leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act but cannot return to work, FMLA cases become Americans With Disabilities Act cases. This means that employers that might have been able to terminate employees under FMLA must engage in the interactive process under the ADA to determine whether reasonable accommodation will enable employees to continue at their jobs. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is taking an aggressive stance against employers with automatic termination policies once employees have missed a certain amount of work. Attorneys say employers can protect themselves by assuming all FMLA cases will become ADA cases, and they must be aware of the conflicts and overlaps between the two laws when it comes to light duty, stacking leave, fitness-for-duty certifications, medical exams, health insurance, confidentiality, and reinstatement.