The new law includes a number of protections for employees who take leave.
Return to Work:
Section 10 provides:
- An employee of an employer with 25+ employees is entitled to be restored to the position of employment held by the employee when the leave commenced, if that position still exists, without regard to whether the employer filled the position with a replacement worker during the period of leave. If the position held by the employee at the time leave commenced no longer exists, the employee is entitled to be restored to any available equivalent position with equivalent employment benefits, pay and other terms and conditions of employment.
- For employers with fewer than 25 employees, if the position held by an eligible employee when the employee’s leave commenced no longer exists, an employer may, at the employer’s discretion based on business necessity, restore the eligible employee to a different position with similar job duties and with the same employment benefits and pay.
Section 10 also states generally that it is an unlawful employment practice to discriminate against an eligible employee who has invoked any provision of the law.
Discrimination & Retaliation Prohibited:
Under the law, it is an unlawful employment practice for an employer to:
- Violate section 10 of the law.
- Deny leave or interfere with any other right to which an eligible employee is entitled under the law.
- Retaliate or in any way discriminate against an employee with respect to hire or tenure or any other term or condition of employment because the employee has inquired about the rights or responsibilities under the law.
Employees can file a lawsuit or BOLI complaint for violations of Section 10 of the law.
Notice to Employees:
The law requires employers to provide a notice to employees (more on that in a later post) which discloses that:
- Discrimination and retaliatory personnel actions against an employee for inquiring about the family and medical leave insurance program established under the law, giving notification of leave under the program, taking leave under the program or claiming family and medical leave insurance benefits are prohibited; and
- Employees have the right to bring a civil action or to file a complaint for violation of section 10 or 11 of the law.
In our next post we will discuss employer and employee notice requirements and leave logistics.