FMLA Needs in the Senior Care Industry
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), applies to all industries, including the Senior Care Industry. An employer is considered to be covered if they employ 50 or more workers, in which case they must be cognizant of the FMLA and their responsibilities as employers under this act. The Family and Medical Leave Act allows employees to take unpaid, job protected leave for a variety of medical and family related reasons, such as personal illness or that of a partner or child, time to care for the birth, adoption or fostering of a child amongst other criteria. The criteria and definitions of illness are described fully within the FMLA. However, it is important to note that these may vary depending on state, industry and if the employee is a member of a military family, in which case different criteria apply. Noncompliance of the Family Medical and Leave Act can lead to serious financial consequences. Similarly, rules and definitions may be periodically updated, calling on employees to be aware of any changes which have occurred to ensure compliance.
Ensuring adherence to the Family and Medical Leave Act, including accurate processing and administration of a leave request, can increase the workload of for employers and HR staff. Similarly, employers may have questions regarding how to better track family and medical leave related absence, how to streamline paperwork and how to ensure employees are eligible for family and medical leave. Compliance requirements are complex. Some companies may choose to utilize existing HR procedures. However, due to the regular FMLA updates and specialist knowledge required, this may cause companies additional workload taking them away from the day to day management of other aspects of the company. Many companies are opting to utilize specialist FMLA management solutions. These are automated software solutions which help to track employee work hours, identify employees who are eligible to leave, and help to administer the family and medical leave process once a request has been made. In many cases, these programs will generate the draft documents and letters which are required during each stage of the process. They also provide a central data storage area for all employee information. Some software solutions also provide step by step guidance during the leave administration process, reminding employers of their obligations and timelines. Software may also be automatically updated in accordance with changes to the Family and Medical Leave Act, on both federal and state levels, ensuring that the employer is always in compliance.
These options help to reduce company overheads, streamline the Family and Medical Leave process whilst providing data analysis and report generating software for employers. These options are suitable for small, mid-sized, and larger companies and can often be tailored to meet the company’s individual needs.