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Denied in PA after FMLA leave and dr. not authorizing return to full duty

by Jennifer
(Pennsylvania)

My husband had a back injury for which he was placed on FMLA with a dr. excuse. He gave the 1st excuse to his employer in May. He later spoke to his employer after being re-evaluated and told them he was still unable to return to full duty per his doctors orders. They did not mention to him that he needed a second excuse from the dr. He had already received all of his FMLA paperwork and there was a copy of the company policy that stated he was not able to return to work until he was completely cleared of all restrictions. He filed for unemployment and was denied because he did not give his employer a second excuse. He just had his appeal hearing today and the notice they sent him stating they needed an updated excuse was sent certified and signed by "mailman Sam". My husband never received this notice and when he was asked by unemployment in September to get an excuse from his dr. saying he can perform light duty work (which his company does not allow), he was able to obtain it without any problem stating he was able to perform light duty as of July. Does he have any chance of winning his case?




Hi Jennifer,

Can you tell me how the referee was acting when it was learned that the receipt for the certified mail said "mailman Sam"?

Did he ask any questions about that?

By the way, let me tell you what my experience is with PA unemployment and employer's who will not accommodate medical restrictions until fully cleared. You can collect unemployment until you are fully cleared or if your employer terminates you.

The problem for your husband is whether he is believed that he never received that piece of mail.

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Oct 05, 2013
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Pregnancy and reduced hours
by: Anonymous

I've read many of you answers to other people question and I've come across you saying that some could get UI if put on reduced hours bc of a medical condition per doctor and then I see you say some can't because they have to be able and available. In what case can you receive benefits if your doctor reduces your hours? Just so I'm clear. And as for FMLA I just put in the request yesterday so I'm sure I have time to get is completed once they mail me the paper work. I'm more then likely not going to get approved bc I haven't been with the company for 12 months but Employee Relations think I should do it for a paper trail. But if my doctor reduces them without FMLA are you telling me I won't get UI? Even though this is something out of my control?




Reduced hours can make someone eligible for partial unemployment benefits .. however, that would only be when the employer refuses to accommodate a medical restriction which would still allow you to work full-time.

For instance, let's say your doctor says your pregnancy requires you to avoid lifting anything weighing more than 10lbs. but your employer says they don't have work for you that can accomodate the lifting of those coins .. that is actually a refusal to accommodate a medically documented restriction and becomes a temporary lack of work claim .. because you can work .. with restrictions of course, but the reason you're not working is because the employer cannot accomodate.

Of course, it is your responsibility to document all this, so it is clear to a third party (the unemployment claims dept.) to see this is the case and not your fault for something like refusing an adequate work accommodation.

Did this help?

Therefore


Oct 05, 2013
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Pregnant and reduced schedule
by: Anonymous

Yes I have out in a request for accomadations and well as FMLA. I have my paper work for accomadations and Jesuit f for the paper work for Intermettent FMLA so when I go to my next appt which is noted 10/14 I can have my doctor fill it out!!! When I say work me as a dog I say they have me doing two peoples jobs! Depending on of its busy in the teller side they have me there is it then becomes busy on the customer service side they then put me there! Am I carrying bags of cash to fill the vault no because that impossible you should know that! But what I am carrying is heavy boxes if coin and safe deposit boxes that feel like they have bricks in them! When I ask for help from my men managers they look at me like I'm crazy! This is not the first bank I've worked for and I'm used to normally sitting down being stationary but it's hit like that here! Because they don't have enough desk they rather make me "lobby managed" whim hitch basically means stand up all day walking around talking to customers and when they need my help I have to assist then standing up at the lobby computer. I'm not asking not to work I'm asking for accomadations (to be stationary and not lift heavy things) but if need be that I get reduced hours because even asking to leave late or come in early for dr appts is a problem I am willing to take it. So my question to you is if my doctor fills out my forms saying I need reduced hours am I able to collect the other portion from UI.




So, my point to you, is you have not yet been approved for FMLA .. because you are waiting for your next Dr. appt.

Maybe you should view FMLA guidelines so you know what your responsibilities are in this matter.

And anonymous .. I myself have never worked in a bank .. so I have to rely on someone explaining to me work procedures, but aside from hefting boxes of coins in your condition .. it sounds like your employment is typical for an employee during a recession that has yet to recover by adding jobs.

Has it occurred to you that until your FMLA is approved .. per guidelines .. you're unprotected?

UI compensation at this moment would be doubtful though because if your hours are reduced .. it would be because you're medically unable to work .. although any STD policy your employer might carry might also compensate you .. maybe.

For now, I see this as an employer accommodation issue and currently they don't have to comply with any medical restriction covered under FMLA because you're hangin' back on getting the paperwork completed.

You have a limited amount of time (if you read the FMLA guidelines) to get that paperwork filled out by your physician.


Oct 04, 2013
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Pregnant and Reducing Hours
by: Anonymous

Hello,
I am currently pregnant and have asked my managers for light duty work which is available beucase I work at a bank. I have beed denied the verbal reques and have been continued to be worked like a dog. I currently have an open case with HR regarding my request for accomadations. Today I was feeling sick and I called out after being in the ER all night. My manager called and said that he would have to put me on a corrective action from my call outs. I have explained to him that when they run me around from one end of the branch to the next I become in pain and I really need to be stationary but he tells me he doesn't know and he will figure it out (that was 2 months ago).no change. I have been told by Employee relations that I should request for reduced scheduled hours on top of my accommodation request being as though its hard for me to complete a 40hr work week when they run me. I have done that today and waiting for my next dr apt 10/14 to have my ob fill out the form. If my ob decided to reduce my hours due to my pregnancy will I be able to collect the other portion from unemployment in PA.




Do you have medical documentation to support the need for the accommodation?

Has anyone made mention of the possibility of intermittent FMLA to you?

Or if you have shown the employer medical documentation to accommodate a condition of your pregnancy .. why wouldn't HR be concerned your manager might be creating potential liability for the bank if you manager does follow through with a corrective action.

What exactly, do you mean when you say they work you like a dog .. at a bank? Are you hefting heavy bags of money all day to fill the vault?

You mentioned all sorts of things, but not one thing about what you've personally done to protect your job, and your rights in the workplace.

Chris

Jul 14, 2011
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fmla and unemployment
by: Anonymous

My wife and I recently had a baby in march and she asked to take FMLA leave. This was not a problem with her job and all necessary paper work was filed. She had told her job that she would be taking a little longer than twelve weeks and was told that it would not be a problem. Actually, she is to start back to work now that she has written doctor. Before her FMLA leave was up her job asked her to get a doctor's note saying she could return to work. this took a little longer to obtain since the doctor took a vacation . she was also told by the doctor that her stitches were not completely healed and that she could not return to her duties as a server. After her 12 weeks was up she was sent a note that said she was fired for not coming back to work right away. her boss at work later told her it was a formality and assured her that she is still employed and is going to work next week . is it ok for the company to appeal her unemployment. they already gave her $2500



Yes, it is an employer's right to appeal benefits when allowed as it is an employee's to appeal when denied.

The appeal is all about the responsibilities involved when one is unable to return to work .. on their return to work date.

The one thing you can be sure of is that only the appearance of formally ending the employment relationship is the end of at least one term of her employment. If she starts next week .. I would think it would be as if she were just another new employee.

Do you not find it curious that the employer is protesting her right to unemployment if it was just a "formality" to end her employment in the first place?

Personally, I know it is par for the course ..

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