When California workers go to their workplaces, they might not think about all of the rights that accompany them. If workers never encounter an employment issue or health problem, they may never have to understand these rights. However, in most cases, employees are not that lucky.
In 2015, families do not always look the same as they have in decades past. The definition of a family is much broader for a number of important reasons. However, with this shift in the definition of a family, has come some legal questions about who qualifies for certain state and federal benefits. In particular, there have been questions about who qualifies for protections under the Family Medical Leave Act -- a federal law.
When a California family welcomes a new baby, it is often a joyous time. People want to celebrate the birth of the baby and bond as a family. However, pregnancy and birth is often accompanied with medical complications that require employees to take time off from work. When this occurs, California and Federal employment laws may give some employees protections against losing their jobs. In particular, the federal Family Medical Leave Act allows the mother and father of a new baby to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave following the birth of a baby as long as that employee qualifies for benefits.
While people's jobs are often important to them, they are, many times, not the most important things in their lives. People have families -- children, parents and spouses -- who they love and take care of. When a family member gets sick, however, people can feel torn. They may feel like they are unable to work because they are needed by their family members while feeling an obligation to their jobs.
There comes a time in most California residents' lives where they or a family member are facing an illness. In these cases people often need to rely on family members for their care. During the illness, people often don't have time to go to work in addition to caring for their loved one. They may need a temporary break from work as they concentrate on their health or that if their family member.
There are times when people cannot go to work. While California residents value their jobs, in some situations their family has to come first. Taking care of a sick child, for example, is a time when parents may not be able to get to the office.
California employees are often pulled in many different directions. While they have important responsibilities at work, they also have very important responsibilities and obligations to their family and their own health. In some cases, people must choose between the two. When people need to leave work to take care of their family or attend to a personal issue, they can sometimes still feel obligated to fulfill their duty at work.
With the nation recently celebrating Father's Day, the role of dads in today's society has been on the mind of many people. In years past, fathers were not expected to take the active role in parenting that they are today. In fact, they weren't even expected to be in the delivery room. However, this role has changed over time, and many men have welcomed this change. Fathers are now expected to be present for the birth of their child and to participate in that child's upbringing. Some have argued that men now face many of the work-life balancing issues that working mothers have faced for years.
Grandparents are playing an increasingly important role in the lives of their grandchildren. Many want to be active parts of their grandchildren's lives from the moment they are born. Some California grandparents have even taken on the role of fulltime caregiver for their grandchildren if the child's parents are unable to parent. As grandparents become a bigger part in their grandchildren's lives, some may be wondering if these grandparents have certain legal rights -- including the right to take leave following the birth of a grandchild.
The Family Medical Leave Act protects certain workers from losing their job when they need to take time off from work. This time includes time off to be with a new baby, or to care for a sick family member. When an employee qualifies for FMLA leave, the employer must hold the employee's job for them for up to 12 weeks. During this time, the employee does not need to get paid but FMLA specifics can be complicated. Determining how to properly take FMLA leave, or whether a California employee qualifies for leave can often create confusion.