I have worked part time at my current place of employment for 19 years. I recently went out on maternity leave and was told I’d have a position when I return. After two months of getting a run around,I am now being told that they are not taking me back. Is that legal?
I’m sorry to hear you’re getting the runaround. In general, part-time employees may not qualify for maternity leave under FMLA as it requires the employee to have worked a fixed number of hours in the 12 months prior to taking leave (such as 1,000 hours). However, maternity laws vary by state, so the location of your company, as well as its size dictate what the company is required to do.
Nonetheless, you may have recourse if 1) your company published a maternity leave policy, under which you are eligible or 2) your employer made an “implied contract” with you by stating that you would have a job or 3) you worked the required number of hours in the prior 12 months.
Fit Small Business is an educational website and cannot offer legal advice. At this point, your best option is to find a labor law attorney to take your case or file a case with the wage and hour division of the department of labor. https://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/whdfs77b.htm
The department of labor does not look favorably on companies that deny legitimate FMLA leave.
Laura, HR Writer, SPHR, MAEd
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