HR Management & Compliance

Reinstatement Rights under the FMLA and ADA

Do employees have a right to reinstatement to their previous position upon return from Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) leave? What are the exceptions to reinstatement under each law?

With some exceptions, FMLA requires that employers provide each qualified returning employee with the same position or with an equivalent position with equivalent benefits, pay, and other terms and conditions of employment.

An employer may deny or delay reinstatement after FMLA leave under the following 6 circumstances:

  1. Certification. If an employee fails to provide a medical fitness-for-duty certificate, when the employer has requested this certification before the commencement of the leave, and when the leave was taken for the employee’s own serious health condition.
  2. Termination of employment. If the employer can show the employee would not have remained employed if leave had not been taken.
  3. No intent to return. If an employee unequivocally advises the employer of his or her intent not to return to work.

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