Full-time employees in California and across the United States are allowed to take extended time off in order to recuperate from an illness or injury or to take care of an immediate family member. The Family and Medical Leave Act enables eligible workers this extended time off without losing employment. However, it is not uncommon for employers to retaliate against employers who take advantage of FMLA leave. A woman in another state filed a wrongful termination lawsuit after she was allegedly fired for taking FMLA leave.
The woman worked as the director of the recreation department for a town in another state. According to the lawsuit, her husband was diagnosed with cancer and she was notified that she could take leave from her job to attend her husband's medical appointments under the Family and Medical Leave Act. Within a week of receiving this notice, the woman alleged that was disciplined for the first time in her 30-year career with the town.
The lawsuit claimed that the plaintiff was then placed on administrative leave five weeks later. The woman was eventually terminated, according to claims. Reportedly, the lawsuit was recently settled for $230,000.
Unfortunately, employees in California who need to take extended leave will sometimes face retaliation upon returning to work. Those who feel they have been unfairly punished for using rights established under the Family and Medical Leave Act or the California Family Rights Act could benefit by seeking the services of a legal representative. A successful claim could result in a substantial monetary award to help victims replace lost wages and other losses.