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Family Medical Leave

About Family Medical Leave

Blinn College will provide as much as 12 weeks of unpaid leave for the birth of a child or adoption or to care for a seriously ill child, spouse, or parent, or in case of an employee's own serious illness.

In situations where an employee must care for a covered service member who sustained serious injury or illness, up to 26 weeks of unpaid leave will be provided. Employees will return to the same or comparable job. Employees must have worked at least one year and have at least 1250 hours of service during the previous 12-month period in order to be eligible for family medical leave.

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Family Medical Leave FAQs

Who is eligible for Family Medical Leave?

To be eligible an employee must have worked for an employer for at least 12 months or meet the hours of service requirement in the 12 months preceding the leave, and work at a site with at least 50 employees within 75 miles.

How is Family Medical Leave administered?

Blinn College considers employee eligibility for FMLA under a “rolling” 12- month period, measured backward from the date an employee uses FMLA. Employees must give at least 30 days’ notice when their need for FMLA leave is foreseeable. If timely notice is not given, your leave may be delayed or denied until the employee provides the proper notice. Blinn College requires a medical certification when employees request leave for their own serious health condition or for the serious health condition of a covered family member. Additionally, Blinn College can obtain clarification of a medical certification if it is incomplete or insufficient. If there is reason to question the validity of an employee’s medical certification, Blinn College may require the employee to obtain a second opinion, and possibly a third opinion, at the Institution’s expense.

How do I request Family Medical Leave?

An employee requesting family medical leave should contact a member of Human Resources at least 30 days in advance when leave is foreseeable and complete the Request for Family Medical Leave Form (accessible on the Human Resources webpage). Family Medical Leave can be issued for a continuous 12-week period or intermittently, to use leave hours only as you need them, if it is for the same medical issue. For tracking purposes, employees issued intermittent leave will be required to provide an update to Human Resources every 4 weeks regarding their need to continue leave.

While out on approved family medical leave, employees should not work in any other position at Blinn College or at any outside employment position.

Blinn College requires employees who return from leave for their own serious health condition to submit a Fitness for Duty Notice before returning to work in any capacity, whether working on campus or working remotely.

What happens to my health benefits while out on FMLA?

While out on leave, Blinn College must maintain the employee’s health coverage under any “group health plan” on the same terms as if the employee had continued to work. Upon return from FMLA leave, most employees must be restored to their original or equivalent position with equivalent pay, benefits, and other employment terms. Use of FMLA cannot result in the loss of any employment benefit that accrued prior to the start of an employee’s leave. If an employee no longer has leave hours to receive pay, the status may change to “leave without pay” and the employee must then continue to make any normal contributions to the cost of the health insurance premiums. Our Human Resources office will notify you if/ when you are responsible for paying any portion of your health premiums, and you will receive an invoice from ERS.

If an employee fails to return to work after FMLA leave has been exhausted or expires, an employer may recover from the employee its share of health plan premiums during the employee’s unpaid FMLA leave, unless the employee’s failure to return is due to one of the reasons set forth in 29 C.F.R. 825.213.

Who is responsible for entering leave hours?

Employee leave hours must be reported via Self-Service Banner (SSB) online leave system. Human Resources will enter leave hours for employees who are out on continuous leave and/or because of extenuating circumstances and submit to the immediate supervisor for approval. If an employee is out on intermittent leave, the employee will be responsible for entering their leave hours into SSB in a timely manner, consistent with Blinn College policy.

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FML Process at Blinn College

Once supervisors are approached by employees regarding a medical leave issue or the employee is absent for 3 consecutive days, and the absence seems likely to qualify for Family Medical Leave (FML), it is the responsibility of the supervisor to refer the employee to Human Resources and to notify Human Resources immediately. Supervisors should not ask employees any information regarding their personal health and/ or their need for leave. When in doubt, instruct the employee to complete the Request for Medical Leave form or refer to Human Resources.

Supervisors cannot give approval for an employee to work remotely or provide any such accommodation to an employee, without the consent and approval from Human Resources.

Human Resources will contact the employee for specific information needed in order to determine the need for leave and/ or prepare FML paperwork.

The supervisor will be notified once an employee’s leave of absence dates have been determined, as per the healthcare provider form. No medical information regarding the employee’s absence will be shared with supervisors.

Family Medical Leave is provided to the employee to protect their job position while they are away from work. Employees cannot opt to use paid sick leave in lieu of completing Family Medical Leave paperwork when the need for leave is covered under FMLA; however, employees continue to receive a paycheck while on family medical leave, using their available leave hours.

Remote work does not take the place of a period of incapacity. This determination is made by Human Resources, and in accordance with the Certification of Healthcare Provider Form.

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Family Medical Leave Forms

Request for Family Medical Leave: To be completed by the employee to notify Human Resources of the need for medical leave. Human Resources has 5 days to respond to the employee’s request for FML.

FMLA Employee Rights: To explain employee rights according to the Family Medical Leave Act

Fitness for Duty Certification: Must be sent to Human Resources before the employee can return to work in any capacity.

These forms are sent to the employee from Human Resources

Notice of Eligibility and Rights and Responsibilities: This form is used to notify the employee of FML eligibility only. An approval cannot be determined until after the healthcare provider form is received by Human Resources.

Certification of Healthcare Provider for Employee: To be completed by a healthcare provider if the employee’s absence is for their own serious medical condition.

Certification of Healthcare Provider to care for Family Member: To be completed by a healthcare provider if the employee’s absence is to care for a seriously ill immediate family member.

Designation Notice: Provided to the employee once the healthcare provider form has been received and a decision for FML has been determined.

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