How Do Workers’ Comp Leave and FMLA Differ?
- Posted on: Oct 15 2019
There are two different types of leave available to those who need it: workers’ comp and FMLA (the Family and Medical Leave Act). It’s important, however, not to confuse the two. They are not the same, and you are likely going to be eligible for one or the other but not both. If you’re in need of leave, you need to know how these two options differ so you can make the best choice. Here are some of the most fundamental and important differences between worker’s comp and FMLA.
Workers’ Comp Is Only for Your Injuries
If you’re injured on the job, workers’ comp is your go-to option. Work-related injuries are why it was created. However, it’s only available for injuries you have sustained. If you need to take time off work due to the injury or illness of a child, spouse, parent, or other person, workers’ comp is not an option.
However, FMLA is. This leave provides those who meet the eligibility requirements with up to 12 weeks of leave per 12 months (not a calendar year—12 months from the date you receive FMLA). FMLA leave is unpaid, but it does protect your job. Employers are not allowed to retaliate against anyone who is eligible for FMLA.
With FMLA, you can take either 12 weeks at once or ask for intermittent FMLA that you can take as needed, working some days and taking off others. However, your employer can require that you use up all of your paid sick and leave time before taking FMLA.
With workers’ comp, you receive up to six months of paid time off. You are not required to use up any of your personal leave before taking workers’ comp time. However, it’s important to note that each state can implement its own version of workers’ comp, which means your actual compensation or time off can vary. With FMLA, that is not the case—it is a federal law that must be implemented the same way across the country.
Your Employer May Not Offer FMLA
It’s also important to note that only companies with 50 or more employees have to offer FMLA. Small businesses are not required to provide this type of leave. Workers’ comp, on the other hand, is required of every company with employees.
Need Help Filing for Workers’ Comp?
If you need to file for workers’ comp or aren’t sure if it’s the right option, you need a proven workers’ comp doctor on your side. The experts at Maximum Orthopedics have assisted many employees with filing for the compensation they’re due. Contact us today to discuss your specifics.