Family and Medical Leave Act

The federal Family and Medica Leave Act (“FMLA”), which applies to companies that have at least 50 employees, allows employees who have been employed for at least a year and work at least 1,250 hours per year to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave in order to:

  • Treat or recover from their own serious medical condition;
  • Care for a seriously ill child, spouse or parent; or
  • Spend time with a newborn or newly adopted child.

New York Paid Family Leave Act requires employers to provide eligible employees with up to 12 weeks of paid leave in order to care for a close family member with a serious health condition, bond with a newborn, newly adopted, or newly fostered child, or assist with family matters when a spouse, domestic partner, child, or parent is on active military service in another country. Employees who regularly work more than 20 hours per week are eligible for paid family leave after 26 weeks of employment, and employees who work less than 20 hours per week are eligible after they have worked 175 days.

When an employee returns to work from protected leave, the employer must return the employee to his or her position, or to a position that is equivalent in pay, benefits, working conditions and seniority, at the end of the leave.

An employer may violate these laws when it denies an employee’s request for leave or otherwise tries to discourage or prevent an employee from taking protected leave, fails to reinstate an employee after the end of her leave, or retaliates against an employee because he requested or took protected leave.

Contact the attorneys at Joseph & Kirschenbaum LLP to advise you of your rights under the FMLA and other laws concerning family and medical leave. We have represented employees with FMLA claims in a wide range of industries, including hospitality, retail, information technology, financial services, education, real estate management, medicine, and more. You can rely on us to advocate for you when you need medical leave to address a personal health issue, a pregnancy, or the health or a family member.

Call us at 212-688-5640, email at, use this online form. Se habla español.