How to Apply for Parental Leave in Michigan with FMLA
Having a biological child or adopting/fostering a child are important events in the life of any individual, and as a new parent, it may be important to you to spend as much time as possible with your child. However, if the company that you work for does not offer parental leave, then you can opt to take time off via FMLA Michigan (where FMLA refers to the Family and Medical Leave Act).
However, applying for FMLA leave is easier said than done. Some states offer you paid leave while others offer unpaid leave. Plus, there are several conditions that have to be fulfilled before an employee can be eligible for FMLA Michigan.
Rather than wasting a lot of time trying to figure out the laws, you can opt to go through DoNotPay which will take your information and apply to the program on your behalf, or just contact your employer requesting leave for you. This can free up your time so that you spend more time looking after your child.
What is FMLA Michigan?
FMLA is the Family and Medical Leave Act which has been passed to protect workers who may need to take time off from their job for a valid reason such as pregnancy, prenatal care, illness, and mental conditions.
Not all companies have a policy allowing workers to take paid or unpaid time off when they have a baby. And yet, this is something that most parents are going to need. So the FMLA was enacted to give new parents (and people with health issues) the opportunity to take paid/unpaid time off.
Some states offer paid time off via FMLA but Michigan does not number among those states. However, you can request 12 weeks of unpaid leave via FMLA in Michigan as long as you and your company fulfill the following conditions:
- Your company hired at least 50 workers for 20 weeks during the previous year.
- If your company has multiple locations, then it should have hired at least 50 workers for 20 weeks in a 75-mile radius.
- You worked in Michigan for the same employer for at least 12 months.
- You worked at least 1250 hours over the past year.
If all these conditions are fulfilled, then you are eligible for FMLA leave for any valid reason, including the birth or adoption of a child.
What rights do you have under FMLA in Michigan?
You get to take a maximum of 12 weeks off under FMLA. In addition, the law ensures that your employer doesn't discriminate against you in any way.
- If you have health insurance via your company, your employer needs to make sure that it continues throughout the period that you are on FMLA leave.
- When you return to work, your employer has to give you your job back or give you a similar job that pays the same.
- The employer can't refuse to give your FMLA leave or discriminate against you because you decided to take the leave.
- FMLA applies to all public and private employers.
How do you apply for FMLA leave in Michigan?
If you're pregnant or planning to adopt a baby, you may be eligible for FMLA leave in Michigan as long as you and your company fulfill the conditions mentioned above. But how do you go about actually applying for leave?
- Notice: Inform your employer that you will be taking FMLA leave 30 days before your due date/date of adoption. Of course, if you/your spouse goes into labor earlier, you will still be covered by FMLA.
- Paid time off: Decide whether you want to make use of any paid time off that you might have pending. If you have any pending vacation days/sick days from the past year, you can take these after the birth/adoption of your baby and combine them with your FMLA leave. In fact, some employers might require you to use your paid time off first. So you might want to check with your HR department or look in the employee handbook to figure out your company's policy with regard to this.
- Forms: There are two forms on the US Department of Labor website. One is the Employee's Serious Health Condition form or the WH-380-E and the other is the Family Member's Serious Health Condition form or the WH-380-F. The instructions on the forms state that they can be used for "any period of incapacity due to pregnancy or for prenatal care."
- Basic Information: The first part of the form has to be filled out by the employee or the employer and includes very basic information such as the employee's name, title, work schedule, etc.
- Health Information: The second part of the form has to be filled out by the health care provider and certifies that the employee is, in fact, having a serious health condition or is pregnant.
- Company Policy: Sometimes, companies have their own forms for employees to fill out if they are applying for FMLA leave. So speak to your company's HR department to figure out whether this is the case. It is incumbent upon the company to accept any form that you fill out and give to them as long as it has the necessary information.
Request FMLA leave in Michigan using DoNotPay
Filling out government-issued forms is never easy. Plus there are a host of questions on the form, some of which you may be exempt from because, as the form states, "you (the employer) may not request certification for FMLA leave to bond with a healthy newborn child or a child placed for adoption or foster care."
Rather than trying to figure out the FMLA forms on your own, you can opt to apply for FMLA leave via DoNotPay. We will apply to the program or walk you through the form. All you have to do is just answer a few simple questions. This can simplify your life greatly at a time when you need all your energy to focus on the new addition to your family.
If you want to request parental leave but don't know where to start, DoNotPay has you covered in 6 easy steps:
- Tell us which state you work in (if you work in CA, NY, NJ, MA, WA, or DC, your state has a paid family leave program).
- Choose whether you want us to apply to the program for you or contact your employer with your leave request. If you want to apply for the program, we will walk you through the questions on the form and mail the application form for you.
- If you want us to contact your employer, enter your leave details, including the starting date, number of weeks of leave, and how many weeks of paid leave you are requesting (for example, you may take a 12 week leave, but only request 8 weeks of paid leave to make the request reasonable).
- Indicate whether you are the birth parent or not (birth parents have a few additional legal protections).
- Enter the name of your company and the person to address this request to.
- Select whether you want us to email the request to your employer on your behalf.
Using DoNotPay for all your FMLA-related needs
DoNotPay can be used to apply for FMLA in any state. Check your specific state to learn more:
When you are having a biological child or adopting a child, parental leave is a must. But it can be difficult to figure out all the paperwork required for the leave. This is where DoNotPay comes in. We'll figure out the legal requirements and help you fill out the appropriate forms so that you can focus on your child.