The U.S. Department of Labor recently issued new forms for FMLA requests. The form that should be used if an employee needs to take FMLA leave for a personal medical condition, is available by clicking here. The form that should be used if an employee needs to take FMLA leave to care for a family member is available by clicking here.
These forms are optional; employers do not have to require their employees to use them. I would, however, suggest that employers do. The forms contain all the information necessary to validate FMLA leave requests. Additionally, using these forms should expedite DOL investigations of FMLA complaints.
As we previously discussed, the FMLA requires most employers, including local governments, to provide employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave for medical or family emergencies. When an employee knows in advance that he will need to take leave, the FMLA requires him to tell his employer 30 days before he will take leave for a planned medical procedure or, if practicable, the birth or adoption of a child. In these situations, the forms referenced above should be used.
Feel free to contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org; call me at (312) 604-9125 if you have questions about FMLA leave or would like me to review your FMLA leave policy.