Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) Toolbox for Employees

FMLA Toolbox Introduction

The University of Iowa recognizes that employees have a wide range of personal and family obligations. Some of these circumstances are complex and difficult, potentially impacting your ability to be present and productive when at work. It is vital that you strive to meet individual responsibilities regarding attendance and use of leave benefits; however, the University recognizes that some circumstances may require absence from work. The purpose of FMLA is to assist you in balancing work and personal life, by taking reasonable absences from work for medical reasons or for military deployment. For absence related to the following descriptions, discuss your individual situation with your Human Resources Representative for further information regarding FMLA.

The FMLA Toolbox is designed to give you a brief introduction to the regulations of the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) at the University of Iowa, and includes topics such as: eligibility, qualifying events, payment for absence, rights, and responsibilities of FMLA.

Each topic is 3-5 minutes in length, and includes all information relevant to the specific reason for absence. This means you could choose only the event that applies to you. You can also choose additional topics, and although you will hear some duplication, there are unique differences in the application of each. At the end of each section, you will be given the option to return to the toolbox

The next slide will offer options for choosing a possible FMLA qualifying event. Choose the topic that interests you by clicking on the title, and you will go directly to that section of the toolbox.

FMLA Toolbox

The following topics are reasons for absence that may be eligible for FMLA:

Select the topic of interest to you.

My Partner is Pregnant/I am Pregnant

This section is about pregnancy, your own or your partner’s pregnancy.

For eligibility of FMLA, there are two prongs of consideration. First, your Human Resources representative will determine if your employment and hours worked qualify for eligibility. Second, it will be determined if the type of absence is eligible for FMLA coverage.

Am I Eligible for FMLA?

In order to be eligible for FMLA you must have worked for the University of Iowa for an aggregate total of 12 months after a seven year break in service. This means if you left University employment for a period of less than seven years, all of your employment with the University will count towards the 12 months required. If you were away from University employment longer than seven years, you must have worked a total of 12 months since your return.

Additionally, you must have physically worked 1,250 actual hours in the 12 months prior to your need for absence. Any time away from work for sick leave, vacation, comp time used, and holidays are not included in calculating the 1250 hours.

If you are considered eligible for FMLA, your employer will grant you up to 12 weeks of FMLA per calendar year, dependent upon your individual absence needs.

What types of absences are eligible?

If you are the eligible birth mother, you are entitled to FMLA for prenatal care, inability to work due to the pregnancy, the birth of your child, and medical recovery following birth. FMLA allows for up to 12 weeks of bonding time during the first 12 months following birth, and includes medical recovery and first year care of your child. Absence from work is typically a continuous leave. Once you return to work, authorization from your department is required for a reduced schedule for bonding.

If you are an eligible spouse or partner (defined as spouse of the birth mother, either married or common law, or a domestic partner that is registered with UI Benefits), you are entitled to FMLA to: attend prenatal care appointments, care for your pregnant partner if she is incapacitated, be present at the birth of the child, care for your partner following the birth of the child, and to have bonding time with the child following the birth.

If you are the eligible biological father of the child but not a spouse or domestic partner, you are entitled to FMLA absence for birth of the child and bonding time with the child for up to one year following the birth. Only the spouse or registered domestic partner is entitled to take FMLA leave to care for an expecting or recovering mother following birth.

If both you and your partner work at the University of Iowa then you will share up to 12 weeks of FMLA for bonding time following birth, rather than receiving up to 12 weeks individually.

What are my rights?

FMLA assures that if you and your need for absence qualify, you are able to:

  • Take necessary leave,
  • Return from any FMLA absences to the same job position or its equivalent,
  • Maintain your health insurance even if you are in unpaid status for a full calendar month or more, and
  • Return to work with benefits restored as prior to your FMLA leave.
  • Under FMLA employers are required to determine whether absence qualifies as FMLA and designate accordingly. This means that you cannot refuse FMLA designation for your absence.
  • When it is determined if both you and your absence are considered eligible for FMLA, you will receive written Eligibility and Designation Notices from your employing department.

What are my responsibilities?

  • Your responsibilities under FMLA include:
  • If you are aware of the time needed for absence, you are required to arrange your work schedule with your department accordingly.
  • Your department may require that you provide medical documentation for non-bonding absence, which will be completed by your treating health care provider.
  • You may be required to provide a Release to Work document to your department for non-bonding absence.

Payment for Absence

FMLA and your University accruals are used at the same time when both are available. FMLA is absence protection, not paid absence from work. To be paid during FMLA, you must have sick leave, sick leave as Family Caregiving leave, vacation, or comp time available.

Resources

If you have additional questions following this section, please contact your Human Resources Representative. If you are not sure who this is, you can follow the link titled Human Resources Representative. Once you are logged in to Employee Self Service choose the tab titled Personal, under the section titled General choose My HR Rep/Workflow Admin/Dept Admin.

If you would like more information about parental leave you can follow the link titled Parental Leave course. Once you are logged in to Employee Self Service choose the tab titled Personal, under the section Learning and Development choose My Training, then choose the Parental Leave course. The course code is W000PL.

If you would like more information about FMLA, use this link to the FSDS website or the University of Iowa Operations Manual link.

This concludes the section I am Pregnant/My Partner is Pregnant. If you click on the flashing button below, you will be returned to the FMLA Toolbox home where you can learn about other types of absence. If you are finished using the toolbox, you can click to exit the presentation.

I am Adopting a Child

This section is about adoption of a child.

For eligibility of FMLA, there are two prongs of consideration. First, your Human Resources representative will determine if your employment and hours worked qualify for eligibility. Second, it will be determined if the type of absence is eligible for FMLA coverage.

Am I eligible for FMLA?

In order to be eligible for FMLA you must have worked for the University of Iowa for an aggregate total of 12 months after a seven year break in service. This means if you left University employment for a period of less than seven years, all of your employment with the University will count towards the 12 months required. If you were away from University employment longer than seven years, you must have worked a total of 12 months since your return.

Additionally, you must have physically worked 1,250 actual hours in the 12 months prior to your need for absence. Any time away from work for sick leave, vacation, comp time used, and holidays are not included in calculating the 1250 hours.

If you are considered eligible for FMLA, your employer will grant you up to 12 weeks of FMLA per calendar year, dependent upon your individual absence needs.

What types of absences are eligible?

If eligible, you are entitled to take FMLA absences prior to the placement of the child if the absence is required for the placement of the child to proceed. You are also entitled to take up to 12 weeks of FMLA for bonding with the child, and this is available for up to one year following the entrance of the child in to your home. Absence from work is typically a continuous leave. Once you return to work, authorization from your department is required for a reduced schedule for bonding.

If both you and your partner work at the University of Iowa then you will share up to 12 weeks of FMLA for bonding time following the entrance of your child in to your home, rather than receiving up to 12 weeks individually.

What are my rights?

  • FMLA assures that if you and your need for absence qualify, you are able to:
  • Take necessary leave,
  • Return from any FMLA absences to the same job position or its equivalent,
  • Maintain your health insurance even if you are in unpaid status for a full calendar month or more, and
  • Return to work with benefits restored as prior to your FMLA leave.
  • Under FMLA employers are required to determine whether absence qualifies as FMLA and designate accordingly. This means that you cannot refuse FMLA designation for your absence.
  • When it is determined if both you and your absence are considered eligible for FMLA, you will receive written Eligibility and Designation Notices from your employing department.

What are my responsibilities?

Your responsibilities under FMLA include:

  • If you are aware of the time needed for absence, you are required to arrange your work schedule with your department accordingly.
  • Your department may require that you provide documentation related to adoption of the child.

Payment for Absence

FMLA and your University accruals are used at the same time when both are available. FMLA is absence protection, not paid absence from work. To be paid during FMLA, you must have sick leave as adoption leave, vacation, or comp time available.

Resources

If you have additional questions following this section, please contact your Human Resources Representative. If you are not sure who this is, you can follow the link titled Human Resources Representative. Once you are logged in to Employee Self Service choose the tab titled Personal, under the section titled General choose My HR Rep/Workflow Admin/Dept Admin.

If you would like more information about parental leave you can follow the link to the Parental Leave course. Once you are logged in to Employee Self Service choose the tab titled Personal, under the section Learning and Development choose My Training, then choose the Parental Leave course. The course code is W000PL.

If you would like more information about FMLA, use this link to the FSDS website or the University of Iowa Operations Manual link.

This concludes the section I am Adopting a Child. If you click on the flashing button below, you will be returned to the FMLA Toolbox home where you can learn about other types of absence. If you are finished using the toolbox, you can click to exit the presentation.

A Foster Child is Coming to Live With Me

This section is about foster children entering the home.

For eligibility of FMLA, there are two prongs of consideration. First, your Human Resources representative will determine if your employment and hours worked qualify for eligibility. Second, it will be determined if the type of absence is eligible for FMLA coverage.

Am I eligible for FMLA?

In order to be eligible for FMLA you must have worked for the University of Iowa for an aggregate total of 12 months after a seven year break in service. This means if you left University employment for a period of less than seven years, all of your employment with the University will count towards the 12 months required. If you were away from University employment longer than seven years, you must have worked a total of 12 months since your return.

Additionally, you must have physically worked 1,250 actual hours in the 12 months prior to your need for absence. Any time away from work for sick leave, vacation, comp time used, and holidays are not included in calculating the 1250 hours.

If you are considered eligible for FMLA, your employer will grant you up to 12 weeks of FMLA per calendar year, dependent upon your individual absence needs.

What types of absences are eligible?

If eligible, you are entitled to take FMLA absences prior to the placement of the child if the absence is required for the placement of the child to proceed. You are also entitled to take up to 12 weeks of FMLA for bonding with the child, and this is available for up to one year following the entrance of the child in to your home. Absence from work is typically a continuous leave. Once you return to work, authorization from your department is required for a reduced schedule for bonding.

If both you and your partner work at the University of Iowa then you will share up to 12 weeks of FMLA for bonding time following the entrance of your child in to your home, rather than receiving up to 12 weeks individually.

What are my rights?

FMLA assures that if you and your need for absence qualify, you are able to:

  • Take necessary leave,
  • Return from any FMLA absences to the same job position or its equivalent,
  • Maintain your health insurance even if you are in unpaid status for a full calendar month or more, and
  • Return to work with benefits restored as prior to your FMLA leave.
  • Under FMLA employers are required to determine whether absence qualifies as FMLA and designate accordingly. This means that you cannot refuse FMLA designation for your absence.
  • When it is determined if both you and your absence are considered eligible for FMLA, you will receive written Eligibility and Designation Notices from your employing department.

What are my responsibilities?

Your responsibilities under FMLA include:

  • If you are aware of the time needed for absence, you are required to arrange your work schedule with your department accordingly.
  • Your department may require that you provide documentation related to placement of the child.

Payment for Absence

FMLA and your University accruals are used at the same time when both are available. FMLA is absence protection, not paid absence from work. To be paid during FMLA, you must have vacation or comp time available.

Resources

If you have additional questions following this section, please contact your Human Resources Representative. If you are not sure who this is, you can follow the link titled Human Resources Representative. Once you are logged in to Employee Self Service choose the tab titled Personal, under the section titled General choose My HR Rep/Workflow Admin/Dept Admin.

If you would like more information about parental leave you can follow the link to the Parental Leave course. Once you are logged in to Employee Self Service choose the tab titled Personal, under the section Learning and Development choose My Training, then choose the Parental Leave course. The course code is W000PL.

If you would like more information about FMLA, use the link to the FSDS website or the University of Iowa Operations Manual link.

This concludes the section A Foster Child is coming to Live with Me. If you click on the flashing button below, you will be returned to the FMLA Toolbox home where you can learn about other types of absence. If you are finished using the toolbox, you can click to exit the presentation.

I Have a Family Member with a Health Condition

This section is about family members with a health condition.

For eligibility of FMLA, there are two prongs of consideration. First, your Human Resources representative will determine if your employment and hours worked qualify for eligibility. Second, it will be determined if the type of absence is eligible for FMLA.

Am I eligible for FMLA?

In order to be eligible for FMLA you must have worked for the University of Iowa for an aggregate total of 12 months after a seven year break in service. This means if you left University employment for a period of less than seven years, all of your employment with the University will count towards the 12 months required. If you were away from University employment longer than seven years, you must have worked a total of 12 months since your return.

Additionally, you must have physically worked 1,250 actual hours in the 12 months prior to your need for absence. Any time away from work for sick leave, vacation, comp time used, and holidays are not included in calculating the 1250 hours.

If you are considered eligible for FMLA, your employer will grant you up to 12 weeks of FMLA per calendar year, dependent upon your individual absence needs.

What types of absences are eligible?

If eligible, you are entitled to FMLA for both physical and psychological care of your family member. When determining if the absence qualifies for FMLA, the presence of other family members will not be taken in to consideration. Your Human Resources Representative will work with you to determine if both you and your family member’s health condition are eligible for FMLA absences.

Who is considered family?

Under FMLA family members include: a spouse recognized by Iowa law for purposes of marriage including common law, domestic partners of the same and opposite gender registered with University Benefits; a parent, including, biological, step, adoptive, foster, or an individual that functioned as the parent; a son or daughter under the age of 18, including biological, adopted, step or foster child, or legal ward. Children over 18 with a disability may also be eligible.

What is a health condition?

FMLA defines a health condition as: an illness, injury, impairment, or physical or mental condition that involves inpatient care or continuing treatment by a health care provider. Other serious health conditions include incapacity and treatment, chronic conditions, permanent or long term conditions, or conditions requiring multiple treatments. Your Human Resources Representative will work with you to determine if your family member has an FMLA qualifying health condition.

What are my rights?

FMLA assures that if you and your need for absence qualify, you are able to:

  • Take necessary leave,
  • Return from any FMLA absences to the same job position or its equivalent,
  • Maintain your health insurance even if you are in unpaid status for a full calendar month or more, and
  • Return to work with benefits restored as prior to your FMLA leave.
  • Under FMLA employers are required to determine whether absence qualifies as FMLA and designate accordingly. This means that you cannot refuse FMLA designation for your absence.
  • When it is determined if both you and your absence are considered eligible for FMLA, you will receive written Eligibility and Designation Notices from your employing department.

What are my responsibilities?

  • Your responsibilities under FMLA include:
  • If you are aware of the time needed for absence, you are required to arrange your work schedule with your department accordingly.
  • Your department may require that you provide medical documentation which will be completed by the health care provider treating your family member for the condition.

FMLA Payment for Absence

FMLA and your University accruals are used at the same time when both are available. FMLA is absence protection, not paid absence from work. To be paid during FMLA, you must have sick leave as Family Caregiving Leave, vacation, or comp time available.

Resources

If you have additional questions following this section, please contact your Human Resources Representative. If you are not sure who this is, you can follow the link titled Human Resources Representative. Once you are logged in to Employee Self Service choose the tab titled Personal, under the section titled General choose My HR Rep/Workflow Admin/Dept Admin.

If you would like more information about FMLA, you can click the link to the FSDS website or the University of Iowa Operations Manual link.

This concludes the section I have a Family Member with a Health Condition. If you click on the flashing button below, you will be returned to the FMLA Toolbox home where you can learn about other types of absence. If you are finished using the toolbox, you can click to exit the presentation.

I Have a Health Condition

This section is about your own health condition.

For eligibility of FMLA, there are two prongs of consideration. First, your Human Resources representative will determine if your employment and hours worked qualify for eligibility. Second, it will be determined if the type of absence is eligible for FMLA.

Am I eligible for FMLA?

In order to be eligible for FMLA you must have worked for the University of Iowa for an aggregate total of 12 months after a seven year break in service. This means if you left University employment for a period of less than seven years, all of your employment with the University will count towards the 12 months required. If you were away from University employment longer than seven years, you must have worked a total of 12 months since your return.

Additionally, you must have physically worked 1,250 actual hours in the 12 months prior to your need for absence. Any time away from work for sick leave, vacation, comp time used, and holidays are not included in calculating the 1250 hours.

If you are considered eligible for FMLA, your employer will grant you up to 12 weeks of FMLA per calendar year, dependent upon your individual absence needs.

What types of absences are eligible?

If eligible, you are entitled to absences required by your health condition for treatment and/or recovery. Your Human Resources Representative will work with you to determine if both you and your health condition are eligible for FMLA.

What is a health condition under FMLA?

FMLA defines a health condition as: an illness, injury, impairment, or physical or mental condition that involves inpatient care or continuing treatment by a health care provider. Other serious health conditions include incapacity and treatment, chronic conditions, permanent or long term conditions, or conditions requiring multiple treatments. Your Human Resources Representative will work with you to determine if you have an FMLA qualifying health condition.

What are my rights?

FMLA assures that if you and your need for absence qualify, you are able to:

  • Take necessary leave,
  • Return from any FMLA absences to the same job position or its equivalent,
  • Maintain your health insurance even if you are in unpaid status for a full calendar month or more, and
  • Return to work with benefits restored as prior to your FMLA leave.

Under FMLA employers are required to determine whether absence qualifies as FMLA and designate accordingly. This means that you cannot refuse FMLA designation for your absence. When it is determined if both you and your absence are considered eligible for FMLA, you will receive written Eligibility and Designation Notices from your employing department.

What are my responsibilities?

Your responsibilities under FMLA include:

  • If you are aware of the time needed for absence, you are required to arrange your work schedule with your department accordingly.
  • Your department may require that you provide medical documentation which will be completed by your treating health care provider.
  • You may be required to provide a Release to Work document to your department.

Payment for Absence

FMLA and your University accruals are used at the same time when both are available. FMLA is absence protection, not paid absence from work. To be paid during FMLA, you must have sick leave, vacation, or comp time available.

Resources

If you have additional questions following this section, please contact your Human Resources Representative. If you are not sure who this is, you can follow the link titled Human Resources Representative. Once you are logged in to Employee Self Service choose the tab titled Personal, under the section titled General choose My HR Rep/Workflow Admin/Dept Admin.

If you would like more information about FMLA, you can click the link to the FSDS website or the University of Iowa Operations Manual.

This concludes the section I have a health condition. If you click on the flashing button below, you will be returned to the FMLA Toolbox home where you can learn about other types of absence. If you are finished using the toolbox, you can click to exit the presentation.

I Have a Family Member that was injured during Active Duty

This section is about family members who were injured during Active Duty.

For eligibility of FMLA, there are two prongs of consideration. First, your HUMAN RESOURCES representative will determine if your employment and hours worked qualify for eligibility. Second, it will be determined if the type of absence is eligible for FMLA.

Am I eligible for FMLA?

In order to be eligible for FMLA you must have worked for the University of Iowa for an aggregate total of 12 months after a seven year break in service. This means if you left University employment for a period of less than seven years, all of your employment with the University will count towards the 12 months required. If you were away from University employment longer than seven years, you must have worked a total of 12 months since your return.

Additionally, you must have physically worked 1,250 actual hours in the 12 months prior to your need for absence. Any time away from work for sick leave, vacation, comp time used, and holidays are not included in calculating the 1250 hours.

FMLA for this reason is a little different than other FMLA qualified absences. If eligible, you will receive up to 26 weeks for FMLA during a 12 month period to care for an injured covered service member, dependent upon your individual absence needs.

What types of absences are eligible?

If eligible, you are entitled to FMLA to care for your family member who was injured during active duty. Your Human Resources Representative will work with you to determine if you and your family member’s injury are eligible for FMLA.

Who is considered family?

Under FMLA family members include; a spouse recognized by Iowa law for purposes of marriage including common law, domestic partners of the same and opposite gender registered with University Benefits; a parent, including, biological, step, adoptive, foster, or an individual that functioned as the parent; son or daughter, including biological, adopted, step or foster child, or legal ward. Next of kin in Military FMLA is the nearest blood relative other than the covered service member’s spouse, parent or child.

What are my rights?

FMLA assures that if you and your need for absence qualify, you are able to:

  • Take necessary leave,
  • Return from any FMLA absences to the same job position or its equivalent,
  • Maintain your health insurance even if you are in unpaid status for a full calendar month or more, and
  • Return to work with benefits restored as prior to your FMLA leave.
  • Under FMLA employers are required to determine whether absence qualifies as FMLA and designate accordingly. This means that you cannot refuse FMLA designation for your absence.
  • When it is determined if both you and your absence are considered eligible for FMLA, you will receive written Eligibility and Designation Notices from your employing department.

What are my responsibilities?

Your responsibilities under FMLA include:

  • If you are aware of the time needed for absence, you are required to arrange your work schedule with your department accordingly.
  • Your department may require that you provide medical documentation which will be completed by the health care provider treating your injured family member.

Payment for Absence

FMLA and your University accruals are used at the same time when both are available. FMLA is absence protection, not paid absence from work. To be paid during FMLA, you must have sick leave as family caregiving leave, vacation, or comp time available.

Resources

If you have additional questions following this section, please contact your Human Resources Representative. If you are not sure who this is, you can follow the link titled Human Resources Representative. Once you are logged in to Employee Self Service choose the tab titled Personal, under the section titled General choose My HR Rep/Workflow Admin/Dept Admin.

If you would like more information about FMLA, you can click the link to the FSDS website, or the University of Iowa Operations Manual.

This concludes the section I have a family member who was injured during active duty. If you click on the flashing button below, you will be returned to the FMLA Toolbox home where you can learn about other types of absence. If you are finished using the toolbox, you can click to exit the presentation.

I Have a Family Member that has been called to Active Duty in a Foreign Country

This section is about deployment of a family member called to active duty in a foreign country.

For eligibility of FMLA, there are two prongs of consideration. First, your HUMAN RESOURCES representative will determine if your employment and hours worked qualify for eligibility. Second, it will be determined if the type of absence is eligible for FMLA coverage.

Am I eligible for FMLA?

In order to be eligible for FMLA you must have worked for the University of Iowa for an aggregate total of 12 months after a seven year break in service. This means if you left University employment for a period of less than seven years, all of your employment with the University will count towards the 12 months required. If you were away from University employment longer than seven years, you must have worked a total of 12 months since your return.

Additionally, you must have physically worked 1,250 actual hours in the 12 months prior to your need for absence. Any time away from work for sick leave, vacation, comp time used, and holidays are not included in calculating the 1250 hours.

If you are considered eligible for FMLA, your employer will grant you up to 12 weeks of FMLA per calendar year, dependent upon your individual absence needs.

What types of absences are eligible?

For this type of FMLA, if eligible, you are able to take time away from work hours to take care of family matters that can arise when a family member is called to active duty in a foreign country. The absence must meet one of the following seven criteria: notice of deployment, military events and related activities, childcare and school activities, financial and legal arrangements, counseling, rest and recuperation, and post-deployment activities. This type of FMLA leave is not intended to cover the need for childcare on a routine, everyday basis, however may include arranging alternative child care.

Who is considered family?

Under FMLA family members include; a spouse recognized by Iowa law for purposes of marriage including common law, domestic partners of the same and opposite gender registered with University Benefits; a parent, including, biological, step, adoptive, foster, or an individual that functioned as the parent; son or daughter, including biological, adopted, step or foster child, or legal ward. Next of kin in Military FMLA is the nearest blood relative other than the covered service member’s spouse, parent or child.

What are my rights?

FMLA assures that if you and your need for absence qualify, you are able to:

  • Take necessary leave,
  • Return from any FMLA absences to the same job position or its equivalent,
  • Maintain your health insurance even if you are in unpaid status for a full calendar month or more, and
  • Return to work with benefits restored as prior to your FMLA leave.
  • Under FMLA employers are required to determine whether absence qualifies as FMLA and designate accordingly. This means that you cannot refuse FMLA designation for your absence.
  • When it is determined if both you and your absence are considered eligible for FMLA, you will receive written Eligibility and Designation Notices from your employing department.

What are my responsibilities?

Your responsibilities under FMLA include:

  • If you are aware of the time needed for absence, you are required to arrange your work schedule with your department accordingly.
  • Your department may require that you provide documentation regarding the deployment, as well as duration and purpose of leave.

Payment for Absence

FMLA and your University accruals are used at the same time when both are available. FMLA is absence protection, not paid absence from work. To be paid during FMLA, you must have vacation or comp time available.

Resources

If you have additional questions following this section, please contact your Human Resources Representative. If you are not sure who this is, you can follow the link titled Human Resources Representative. Once you are logged in to Employee Self Service choose the tab titled Personal, under the section titled General choose My HR Rep/Workflow Admin/Dept Admin.

If you would like more information about FMLA, you can click the link to the FSDS website or to the University of Iowa Operations Manual.

This concludes the section I have a family member who has been called to active duty in a foreign country. If you click on the flashing button below, you will be returned to the FMLA Toolbox home where you can learn about other types of absence. If you are finished using the toolbox, you can click to exit the presentation.

FMLA Toolbox

Check out this interactive FMLA video tutorial.