Family Medical Leave Act, Effective: February 5, 1993

General Provisions

It is Alfred University's policy to grant up to 12 workweeks of family and medical leave during any twelve-month period to eligible employees in accordance with the legal requirements of the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA).

In order to qualify to take family and medical leave under this policy, the employee must meet all of the following conditions:

  • The employee must have worked for the University at least 12 months, or 52 weeks. The time period need not have been consecutive.
  • The employee must have worked at least 1250 hours during the twelve-month period immediately preceding the date the leave would begin.
  • The employee must work at a worksite where 50 or more employees are employed within 75 miles of that worksite.

Eligible employees are provided twelve weeks of FMLA leave per twelve-month period. The University will determine available FMLA leave based on the amount of leave used in the twelve-month period preceding the beginning of the requested leave.

In order to qualify as FMLA leave, the employee must be taking the leave for one or more of the following:

  • for the birth of a son or daughter, and to care for the newborn child;
  • for the placement with the employee of a child for adoption or foster care, and to care for the newly placed child;
  • to care for an immediate family member (spouse, child, or parent — but not a parent "in-law") with a serious health condition; and
  • when the employee is unable to work because of a serious health condition
  • A qualifying exigency arising from the employee’s spouse, child, or parent’s covered active duty or call to active duty in support of a contingency operation
  • To care for a covered service member with a serious injury or illness incurred in the line of active duty if the employee is the spouse, child, parent, or next of kin to the service member (military caregiver leave)

Leave to care for a newborn child or for a newly placed child must conclude within 12 months after the birth or placement.

Spouses employed by the same employer may be limited to a combined total of 12 workweeks of family leave for the following reasons:

  • birth and care of a child;
  • for the placement of a child for adoption or foster care, and to care for the newly placed child; and,
  • to care for an employee's parent who has a serious health condition.

A serious health condition is defined as an illness, injury, impairment, or physical or mental condition which requires: inpatient care; absence of more than three calendar days from regular daily activities that involves continuing treatment by a health care provider; any period of incapacity due to a chronic serious health condition; a period of incapacity that is permanent or long-term due to a condition for which treatment may not be effective; a period of incapacity due to pregnancy or prenatal care; an absence to receive multiple treatments by a health care provider for a condition that likely would result in incapacity if left untreated.

  • A covered service member means a current member of the Armed Forces, National Guard or Reserves who is undergoing medical treatment, recuperation or therapy, is in outpatient status, or is otherwise on the temporary disabled list for a serious illness or injury. A covered service member may also be a veteran who was a member of the Armed Forces, National Guard or Reserves within five (5) years prior to the date on which the veteran undergoes medical treatment, recuperation or therapy.
  • An eligible employee who is the spouse, domestic partner, child, parent, or next of kin of a covered service member may take up to twenty-six (26) weeks of FMLA leave during a single twelve (12) month period.
  • The single twelve (12) month period begins on the first day the eligible employee takes FMLA leave to care for a covered service member and ends twelve (12) months after that date.
  • An eligible employee is entitled to a combined total of twenty-six (26) work weeks of leave for any FMLA-qualifying reason (not 12 weeks plus 26 weeks).
  • FMLA permits employees to take leave on an intermittent basis or to work a reduced schedule under certain circumstances.
    • Intermittent/reduced schedule leave may be taken when medically necessary to care for a seriously ill family member, or because of the employee's serious health condition.
    • Intermittent/reduced schedule leave may be taken to care for a newborn or newly placed adopted or foster care child only with the employer's approval.
  • Only the amount of leave actually taken while on intermittent/reduced schedule leave may be charged as FMLA leave. Employees may not be required to take more FMLA leave than necessary to address the circumstances that cause the need for leave. Employers may account for FMLA leave in the shortest period of time that their payroll systems use, provided it is one hour or less.
  • Employees needing intermittent/reduced schedule leave for foreseeable medical treatment must work with their employers to schedule the leave so as not to unduly disrupt the employer's operations, subject to the approval of the employee's health care provider. In such cases, the employer may transfer the employee temporarily to an alternative job with equivalent pay and benefits that accommodates recurring periods of leave better than the employee's regular job.

Except where leave is not foreseeable, all employees must submit the request in writing to their immediate supervisor, with a copy to the Human Resources Department. The employee must give the University 30 days’ notice, or as much notice as is practicable. If an employee fails to provide 30 days’ notice for foreseeable leave with no reasonable excuse for the delay, the leave request may be denied until at least 30 days from the date the employer receives notice.

Employees requesting FMLA leave will be required to complete necessary paperwork and obtain medical certification as applicable. Failure to provide certification may result in a denial of continuation of leave. Medical Certification must be provided on the form provided by the Human Resources Department.

An otherwise qualified employee's rights to FMLA may be denied or delayed only for the following reasons

  • Timely advance notice of foreseeable leave is not given
  • Timely submission of required and sufficient medical certification is not made by the employee
  • The employee fails to provide required fitness for duty certification
  • The employee expresses an intention not to return to work
  • The employee fraudulently requests or obtains FMLA
  • The employee is employed elsewhere while on FMLA leave

The University will continue the employee’s benefits during the leave period at the same level and under the same conditions as if the employee had continued to work. While on paid leave payroll deductions will continue to collect the employee’s share of benefits premiums. During unpaid leave the employee must make payment for the employee’s share of benefits premiums to the Business Office by the first day of each month. If the payment is more than 30 days late, the employee’s benefits coverage may be dropped for the duration of the leave.

If the employee chooses not to return to work for reasons other than a continued serious health condition, the University will require the employee to reimburse the amount paid for the employee's health insurance premium during the leave period.

  • Leave to care for a birth child or recently placed child:
    1. While disabled as per a physician’s certification, employees must use accrued time as per the Sick Day Policy for their classification. If additional FMLA time beyond such period of disability is requested, or in the event of placement of a child, the employee must use vacation days, followed by personal days and then his/her floating holiday.
  • Leave to Care for an Employee’s Spouse, Child or Parent With a Serious Health Condition:
    1. All employees will use their paid absence days in the following order while a family member is disabled as per a physician’s certification:
      1. Up To Five (5) Family Sick Days - maximum of 5 days per year (subtract out any already used)
      2. Vacation Days
      3. Personal Days/Floating Holiday
  • Leave for Employee’s Own Serious Health Condition:
    1. Employees must use accrued time as per the sick day policy for their classification.

The employee may take FMLA leave in 12 consecutive weeks or, under certain circumstances, use the leave intermittently (take days periodically throughout the year) or to reduce the workweek or workday, resulting in a reduced hour schedule.

If the employee is taking leave for a serious health condition or because of the serious health condition of a family member and is requesting intermittent leave, then the employee must provide documentation as to the medical necessity of the intermittent leave.

If the intermittent leave is approved, the University may temporarily transfer an employee to an available alternative position with equivalent pay and benefits if the alternative position would better accommodate the intermittent or reduced schedule.

Leave for birth, adoption, or foster care of a child will typically be taken continuously however, the University may consider intermittent or reduced hour leave for such circumstances if requested by the employee. The total amount of leave available for the birth, adoption, or foster care of a child must be taken within one year of the birth or placement of the child.

An employee who takes leave under this policy will be able to return to the same job or a job with equivalent status, pay, benefits and other employment terms.

If the leave is for the employee’s own personal illness/injury or follows giving birth to a child, the employee must adhere to the return to work rules as outlined in the sick day policy.

The University may refuse to reinstate certain “key” employees as defined by FMLA.

FMLA may be ran concurrently with other leaves such as Short Term Disability and the NYS Paid Family Leave.