The Mailbag.

AuthorDelogu, Nancy

Can intermittent FMLA be used for care of a spouse?

Q An employee has requested intermittent leave so she can call out to stay with her husband when he has an asthma attack. Do we have to grant it?

--V., Alabama

  1. Yes, if the employee is otherwise eligible (has worked the requisite hours) and his or her spouse has a serious health condition that occasionally needs care, the employee can request intermittent FMLA leave to care for his or her spouse.

    Employees often grow concerned that their need to miss work to care for covered family members will lead their supervisor to consider them unreliable or lacking commitment to the job. In that circumstance, it's probably best for all parties that the employee claims the FMLA entitlement before, rather than after, the absences lead to adverse employment action.

    Are we at legal risk for a fake job posting?

    Q Our company's LinkedIn account was hacked and a bogus job opening was posted on it. Several people responded. Do we have any responsibility?--Beth, Ohio

  2. From a legal perspective, I doubt your organization has any responsibility for the hacking. Finding you legally responsible to individuals who respond to the bogus opportunity by providing (I presume) personal details also seems a bit of a stretch.

    However, from a corporate and community-relations standpoint, you are in a position to do something about the situation. It would seem good to communicate to individuals who, for example, visit your website that this has occurred. Also, you can communicate your company policy on asking for personal information and recruiting, as appropriate. Note: The Better Business Bureau maintains a "scam tracker" that allows you to report what has happened also.

    Is our progressive discipline procedure confusing?

    Q Our company policy has three stages of progressive discipline: verbal, written and final. But managers tend to issue performance improvement plans and count them as part of the progressive discipline without designating if it is part of the verbal or written warning. My concern is that employees could see the PIP as unfair because it is not documented in our policy as a stage of progressive discipline. What do you suggest?--Anonymous, Texas

  3. Generally, "discipline" refers to corrective action for failure to follow the rules, while "performance improvement plans" are designed to address an individual's failure to meet job expectations.


To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT