The Department of Labor has been busy on all things FMLA. This month, the DOL published its final regulations to clarify military family and care for a covered servicemember leaves. For those working in the aviation industry, the new regulations also establish new rules for calculating leave amounts for flight attendants and flight crews. Although the regulations are long, this February 2013 Alert quickly summarizes the changes.
The Wage and Hour Division has also recently issued an administrative interpretation explaining what is meant by a disabled son or daughter over the age of 18. This has created a lot of confusion over the years, as most people believed the regulations meant the exact opposite of what the Division is now saying.
According to the interpretation, a son or daughter who is older than 18 need not have been disabled before the age of 18. This will mean that employers need to look twice at requests to take care of a 35 year old child with cancer, for example.
In order to be a qualified disabled child, the person must satisfy four tests:
- Have a physical or mental disability
- Be incapable of "self care" in 3 or more "activities of daily living"
- Have a serious health condition as defined by the FMLA; and
- Need care because of the serious health condition.
FMLA interference claims seem to be on the rise, like other forms of discrimination claims. When in doubt, we recommend checking with counsel to determine if an employee is eligible for leave.