My Employer is Discriminating Against Me for Taking Time Off Under the FMLA

Web Admin - Friday, May 06, 2016

employer discrimination, taking FMLA, Illinois Employment Law AttorneyMost workers have a federally protected right under the Family And Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to take up to 12 weeks off from work, unpaid, to care for themselves or a close family member who is sick or injured. Additionally, workers do not have to fear losing their job or being discriminated against or retaliated against. 

If you believe that you are an employee who is eligible for FMLA protection, but are worried that your employer has unlawfully violated your FMLA rights, you should consult with an experienced employment law attorney as soon as possible.

Examples of When a Person Can Take Time Off Under the FMLA

There are several instances when a worker can take unpaid leave from his or her job under the FMLA. Examples include:

- When a worker is ill, injured, or has a serious medical condition;

- When a worker needs to provide care for his or her spouse, child, or parent who has a serious medical condition or illness;

- When a worker is incapacitated due to pregnancy;

- When a worker needs prenatal care before a child birth;

- Child birth;

- When a worker needs to provide care to his or her newborn child; or

- A worker is pacing a child up for adoption or into foster care. 

How Do Workers Use FMLA Leave?

When a worker has notice ahead of time that he or she will need to take time off from work under the FMLA, he or she must provide his or her employer with 30 days of notice if possible. When advanced notice is not possible, or the need to take time under the FMLA is sudden and unplanned, workers need to provide notice as soon as possible. Works must follow their employer’s normal policies concerning taking leave. 

Employers Must Respect Your FMLA RIghts

If you are a worker who is eligible for FMLA protection, then your employer must comply with the law and allow you to take the qualifying time that you need. Employers are not permitted to interfere with your rights under the FMLA, nor can an employer restrain you or deny you your FMLA rights. Your employer is also prohibited from discharging you, or discriminating against you, for exercising your rights under the FMLA. 

Discrimination could take the form of:

- Treating you differently after you took FMLA time off;

- Denying you promotions or certain work projects or assignments;

-Giving you a bad review for no good reason other than that you took time off under the FMLA; and/or

- Deeming you ineligible for promotions or bonuses because you took time off under the FMLA. 

No one who is eligible for FMLA protections should be denied his or her rights by his or her employer. If you believe that your employer has improperly taken action against you or has discriminated against you for taking unpaid leave under the FMLA, you should consult with an Illinois employment law attorney today. 

Our law firm serves the communities of Crystal Lake, Des Plaines, Rolling Meadows, Schaumburg, Palatine, Buffalo Grove, Barrington, Inverness, and Deer Park. Please call 847-934-6000 to speak to a member of our team.

    Ken Apicella

    About the Author: Attorney Ken Apicella is a founding partner of DGAA focusing in the areas of personal injury, employment, insurance coverage disputes, and civil litigation. Ken earned his J.D. from DePaul University College of Law in 1999. He has been named a SuperLawyers Rising Star and a Forty Illinois Attorneys Under Forty to Watch. Ken has written and lectured for the Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education and regularly serves as a moderator at Northwest Suburban Bar Association's Continuing Legal Education seminars.


The Family Medical Leave Act

Web Admin - Thursday, May 21, 2015

FMLA, Illinois, Crystal Lake employment lawyerFor various medical-related reasons, it may be necessary for a person to temporarily stop working. The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) provides individuals with a means for doing this without running the risk of losing their job. It is important for both employers and employees to understand this special area of employment law.

What Does the FMLA Provide?

The FMLA allows workers to take an unpaid leave of absence from work for specified medical and family purposes with the continuation of insurance coverage according to the same provisions as if the employee did not take the leave of absence. Under the FMLA, an employer must return the employee to the same job or one that is nearly identical or equivalent. A nearly identical job includes the following:

  1. - Identical pay and benefits;
  2. - The same shift or general work schedule;
  3. - A geographically proximate worksite; and
  4. - The same or substantially similar duties, responsibilities, and status.

An eligible employee is eligible for 12 workweeks of leave in a one-year period for:

  1. - Childbirth and to provide for the child within twelve months of the birth;
  2. - The care of a child adopted or placed under foster care within one year of the placement of the child with the employee;
  3. - The care for a direct family member who has a serious health condition;
  4. - A health condition that prohibits the worker from being able to perform essential job functions; or
  5. - Any demand due to the fact that the employee’s direct family member is a covered military member on covered active duty, which is defined as duty during the deployment to a foreign country.

Alternatively, an eligible employee may be entitled to 26 workweeks of leave during a one-year period to care for a covered service member with a serious injury or illness if the employee is the service member’s direct relative.


The FMLA applies to the following:

  • - Public agencies; and
  • - Private employers with 50 or more employees for at least 20 weeks in the current or previous calendar year.

In order for an individual to be eligible, the employee must:

  1. 1. Work for a covered employer;
  2. 2. Have worked 1,250 hours during the 12 months prior to the start date of the leave;
  3. 3. Work at a location where the employer has 50 or more employees within 75 miles; and
  4. 4. Have worked for the employer for 12 months.

The 12 months of work does not need to be consecutive. Further, under most circumstances, only employment within the last seven years is counted.

For more information about the requirements of the FMLA, whether you are an employer or employee, you should speak with an experienced Illinois employment law attorney. Our firm represents clients throughout the northwest suburbs, including Deer Park, Buffalo Grove, and Crystal Lake. 

Ken ApicellaAbout the Author: Attorney Ken Apicella is a founding partner of DGAA focusing in the areas of personal injury, employment, insurance coverage disputes, and civil litigation. Ken earned his J.D. from DePaul University College of Law in 1999. He has been named a SuperLawyers Rising Star and a Forty Illinois Attorneys Under Forty to Watch. Ken has written and lectured for the Illinois Institute for Continuing Legal Education and regularly serves as a moderator at Northwest Suburban Bar Association's Continuing Legal Education seminars.

Recent Posts


Rolling Meadows insurance dispute lawyers, insurance dispute wrongful termination, employment law, whistleblower protections, Illinois employment laws, discrimination in the workplace elder law distracted driving accidents Whistleblower Claims child safety insurance agent negligence pedestrian-automobile accident Arlington Heights wills and trusts lawyers Chicago lawyer clemency marijuana Palatine estate planning lawyer Fourth of July loopholes Chicago car accident lawyer Schaumburg traffic lawyer Palatine real estate lawyer motorcycle accident lawyer Illinois defective products attorney fatal car accidents insurance disputes, Illinois insurance disputes, Illinois insurance dispute attorneys, denied insurance claims, Arlington Heights insurance dispute attorneys Illinois medical malpractice case Long Grove real estate attorney Rolling Meadows life insurance claim denial attorney Des Plaines Palatine employment law lawyer Illinois wrongful termination lawyer LLCs Illinois corporate lawyer Barrington estate planning attorney employee rights liens Illinois bicycle safety traffic tickets pedestrian accident Des Plaines personal injury attorney deed transfer FSLA Deer Park accident attorney murder charges Chicago employment attorney expungement life insurance residential real estate School Visitation Rights Act Long Grove estate planning Barrington injury attorney underfunded trust Food and Drug Administration's Food Safety Modernization Act Arlington Heights trucking lawyer Deer Park personal injury lawyer Chicago will attorney Mt Prospect Attorney Crystal Lake pet attorney digital media accounts, estate planning, Arlington Heights estate planning attorney, pedestrian injuries, pedestrian fatality Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission Palatine civil litigation lawyer Inverness traffic law firm DUI defense comp time mass shooting Palatine trusts lawyer Illinois estate planning defective products Buffalo Grove traffic attorney Inverness real estate lawyer crossover accidents Long Grove wills and trusts attorneys ObamaCare trustee car collision holiday statistics Chicago insurance law firm appealing an insurance claim consent to a search Rolling Meadows drug defense attorney Illinois medical malpractice lawyers trench injuries trucking accidents insurance claim dispute attorney estate plan Buffalo Grove law firm institutional trustee Deer Park DUI lawyer Rolling Meadows traffic attorney Illinois Human Rights Act Rolling Meadows criminal attorney Illinois Trust Code Deer Park traffic accident attorney Mount Prospect wills and trusts lawyers CAM probate Rolling Meadows insurance dispute lawyers Liquor Control Act texting while driving material misrepresentation BUI construction contracts Barrington workers compensation attorney Buffalo Grove real estate attorney Rolling Meadows marijuana attorney medication errors Chicago estate planning privacy Illinois traffic laws Barrington Traffic Lawyer PTSD foreclosure eluding a police officer estate planning, digital assets, Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act, Illinois digital assets, Illinois estate planning, Arlington Heights estate planning attorney Illinois personal injury employment law sexual harassment Schaumburg criminal law attorney Illinois estate planning attorney Illinois civil litigation lawyer South Barrington real estate lawyer Palatine traffic accidents caretaker rights pet bites wage theft rent to own real estate contracts texting and driving employment attorney Rolling Meadows real estate attorney college kids federal crimes Barrington real estate lawyer employee discrimination paid sick leave Policy Cancellation real estate contract Rolling Meadows litigation lawyer dog bites DUI attorney caregiver FMLA DMV Barrington employment law firm Illinois injury lawyer manufacturing vacation home fines estate tax Illinois LLC creation Palatine insurance lawyer Crystal lake insurance dispute attorney rest breaks Chicago estate planning lawyer home inspection lawyer Inverness corporate attorney insurance denials estate planning for college students mortgage Des Plaines personal injury lawyers Barrington employment law attorney revenge porn Palatine Attorney federal regulations for LLCs drugs liability Deer Park employment law attorney attorney fees Des Plaines real estate lawyer Forcible Entry Illinois workplace lawyer TBI Schaumburg insurance lawyers digital information medical marijuana employees small business Illinois elder law attorney blood alcohol content Rolling Meadows employment attorney Chicago employment lawyer Barrington life insurance lawyer Schaumburg personal injury lawyers investment property blended families traffic violations breach of contract Illinois boating accident lawyer Long Grove estate planning attorney Inverness civil lawyer subcontractor Palatine drug lawyer drunk driving dealing with problem employees Chicago attorney wrongful death car accident taxes Inverness injury lawyer Palatine corporate law attorneys dynasty trusts pet law Exclusions Rolling Meadows corporate lawyer Arlington Heights TBI attorney Barrington boating accident attorney traffic accidents Deer Park workers compensation lawyer Des Plaines motorcycle accident attorney Rolling Meadows DUI lawyer Illinois insurance disputes Illinois employment law anesthesia errors Barrington employment attorney operating agreements Illinois jet ski accident lawyer in terrorem provision estate planning attorney Arlington Heights traffic attorney Inverness elder law lawyer Inverness estate planning lawyer disability benefits Rolling Meadows personal injury lawyers products liability Long Grove estate planning attorneys new real estate form civil litigation attorney Illinois Detainer Actions Buffalo Grove probate lawyer life insurance claims low-ball insurance settlement hiring employees Illinois employment attorneys Barrington civil litigation attorney Arlington Heights injury attorney Illinois motorcycle accident lawyer wrongful termination Illinois home inspection Landlord Tenant Ordinance Chicago corporate attorney Rolling Meadows employment law attorney spinal cord injuries Illinois wills and trusts attorneys guardianship attorney distracted driving accident victims Illinois insurance lawyer medical malpractice Buffalo Grove injury lawyer Schaumburg personal injury lawyer trust payments marijuana crimes attorney Retaliatory Discharge probate fees Schaumburg Attorney personal injury attorney criminal law civil rights violation Barrington estate planning lawyer Schaumburg drug defense lawyer insurance claim delay Crystal Lake employment law attorney license suspension Arlington Heights wills and trusts lawyer Illinois employment law attorneys traffic crimes workers compensation insurance attorney speeding natural gas explosion Rolling Meadows Traffic Lawyer living trust benefits Des Plaines accident attorney drug possession Crystal Lake personal injury lawyer Illinois employee rights attorney. Rolling Meadows personal injury attorney personal injury law firm Palatine construction attorney estate planning Crystal Lake accident attorney wills and trusts insurance dispute Illinois lawyer IRA trust transfer Crystal Lake civil litigation lawyer Deer Park medical malpractice attorney Crystal Lake employment attorney landlord tenant law boating DUI social media after death Affordable Care Act premises liability personal injury accidents health insurance dispute elder abuse Transfer on Death Instrument Illinois pet lawyer unfunded trust Schaumburg real estate lawyer license revocation Class A misdemeanor Schaumburg civil litigation attorney breathalyzer test Barrington business law firm insurance negligence head on collisions Schaumburg criminal attorney Arlington Heights criminal lawyer insurance claims BAC Palatine probate lawyer car accidents Palatine corporate attorney employment law, meal breaks, rest breaks, hotel employees, Des Plaines employment law attorneys unpaid assessment dram shop law car accident lawyer Palatine law firm Jay Andrew license reinstatement rollover car crashes Buffalo Grove medical malpractice lawyers living wills Des Plaines collections attorney Illinois medical malpractice claim driving Buffalo Grove car accident lawyer Family Medical Leave Act Illinois job attorney product liability Illinois attorney Illinois registered agent Illinois employment laws Kenilworth estate planning attorney Crystal Lake injury attorney Illinois Transfer on Death Instrument Illinois insurance claim attorney estate planning trusts Illinois employment law attorney senior citizens Crystal Lake will lawyer Schaumburg estate attorney IRS Arlington Heights accident attorney Rolling Meadows business lawyer Illinois car accident attorney probate process Kenilworth estate planning lawyer Inverness real estate attorney pizza emoji spinal cord injury Crystal Lake insurance lawyer probate claims process vacation home Inverness probate lawyer top life insurance claim denials rollover accidents Inverness personal injury attorney Buffalo Grove personal injury attorney Crystal Lake medical malpractice lawyer Crystal Lake estate planning lawyer job lawyers IRELA car accident lawyers unauthorized overtime life insurance policy Arlington Heights Traffic Lawyer insurance claim Barrington drug crime attorney Joliet general practice lawyers Legal Info Attorney Ken Apicella Illinois pedestrian accident attorney Illinois mortgages Arlington Heights employment law attorneys Mount Prospect real estate lawyer Illinois traffic ticket lawyer underage DUI Arlington Heights Attorney personal injury lawyer ken apicella Palatine civil attorney homestead rights personal injury, auto accident injuries, delayed injuries, serious injuries, Des Plaines personal injury attorneys Long Grove real estate lawyer denied insurance claim insurance claim denial most common reasons for life insurance claim denials insurance agents power of attorney workplace sexual harassment commercial leases meal breaks car crashes Arlington Heights lawyer Arlington Heights personal injury attorney Rolling Meadows boating crash lawyer Crystal Lake criminal defense attorney estate planning lawyer Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act Arlington Heights tax lawyer Schaumburg Schaumburg employment attorney digital assets, digital fiduciary, estate planning, digital content, Long Grove estate planning lawyers Palatine business attorney Barrington medical malpractice lawyers real estate closing Arlington Heights insurance attorney living trust Deer Park criminal attorney Mount Prospect elder law attorney Super Mario overtime violations GM ignition switches underinsured motorist Schaumburg construction accident lawyer Illinois will lawyer Arlington Heights car crash attorneys Deer Park traffic lawyer Illinois construction accident attorney accidental death benefits insufficient documentation coronavirus healthcare claims criminal employee misclassification nursing home negligence wills Barrington Illinois estate planning lawyer Palatine traffic lawyer denial of insurance claim Des Plaines DUI attorney Illinois Smoke Detector Act controlled substance Palatine personal injury lawyer criminal record Palatine workers compensation lawyer income distribution deducation suspended license Rolling Meadows car accident lawyers problem employees Illinois tax attorney hit and run accident Chicago traffic lawyer Rolling Meadows medical malpractice lawyers whistleblower protections Arlington Heights employment attorney work unions Schaumburg life insurance attorney Buffalo Grove corporate attorney uninsured motorist Chicago trucking accident attorney corporate law Schaumburg medical malpractice lawyer modern family estate planning back injuries Inverness DUI lawyer condo workers comp Illinois speeding lawyer BAIID real estate attorneys employment contract no contest clauses insurance claim denials comparative negligence probate claims Illinois living will Crystal Lake medical malpractice attorneys filing a medical malpractice claim medical research Illinois insurance claim dispute lawyers Schaumburg estate planning attorney DNR Deer Park real estate law firm field sobriety test life insurance lawyer DUI penalities Palatine life insurance lawyer DUI Crystal Lake business law attorneys Illinois workers compensation lawyer Rolling Meadows employment law attorneys independent contractor bad faith insurance claims Des Plaines civil attorney medical malpractice compensation Palatine injury attorney gift tax exemption, estate planning, estate planning strategies, Illinois estate planning, South Barrington estate planning attorneys commercial leasing Palatine elder law attorney creditors involuntary manslaughter personal injury claims Palatine criminal defense lawyer Illinois estate planning law firm Inverness accident lawyer pedestrian accidents bicycle dooring accidents Illinois criminal defense attorney construction accidents Illinois business law atorneys employment contract, employment law, employment at-will, Deer Park employment law attorneys, contract, Schaumburg probate attorney Illinois insurance dispute lawyers construction accidents, personal injury, wrongful death, Arlington Heights personal injury attorneys, workers' compensation car crash Arlington Heights personal injury lawyer loss of consortium Rolling Meadows Attorney power of attorney for healthcare Rolling Meadows insurance lawyer Schaumburg employment law attorneys traumatic brain injuries pain and suffering personal injury icy parking lots Illinois personal injury attorney digital assets severance agreements landlord Barrington criminal defense lawyer Rolling Meadows insurance attorney healthcare Rolling Meadows tax attorney boating accidents Illinois wills and trusts Arlington Heights pedestrian accidents denied insurance claims Des Plaines injury law firm unpaid overtime Des Plaines personal injury lawyer defective products lawyer Crystal Lake pedestrian accident lawyer Illinois insurance claims lawyers employment law, Illinois employment laws traffic deaths beneficiary complications Schaumburg wrongful death attorney llinois Real Estate Lawyers Association real estate attorney Crystal Lake car accident attorney Illinois medical malpractice attorney condo association preventing accidents Schaumburg car accident attorney Schaumburg injury lawyer bicycle accidents Illinois business lawyer surgical mistakes Illinois driving without license Illinois employment lawyer Chicago will attorney, social media platforms, Illinois estate planning lawyer, Thanksgiving Des Plaines insurance attorney medical malpractice, missed diagnosis, delayed diagnosis, medical mistake, Deer Creek medical malpractice lawyers traffic offenses Rolling Meadows Buffalo Grove insurance claim dispute lawyers Schaumburg personal injury attorney Crystal Lake law firm digital evidence deadly crashes cell phone accidents POA Illinois insurance claim dispute lawyer gift taxes Home Sale Contingencies Crystal Lake medical malpractice law firm real estate lawyer estate planning, death tax, succession plans, business estate plans, Barrington estate planning lawyers Rolling Meadows criminal lawyer Illinois red light cameras Crystal Lake personal injury attorney Self-Directed IRA Accounts Illinois probate lawyer how to avoid common denials of life insurance claims cell phone trauma after an accident Des Plaines medical malpractice attorney Crystal Lake tax lawyer cause-of-death exclusions contracts Do Not Resuscitate ACA IRA benefits Illinois small business internet trucking accident lawyers DGAA compensatory time truck collisions installment contracts minimum wage Illinois insurance attorney Illinois employment law firm Arlington Heights car accident lawyer Arlington Heights real estate lawyer irrevocable trust Kenilworth estate planning attorneys Crystal Lake bike accident lawyer Arlington Heights wills and trusts attorneys privacy laws Illinois traffic attorney Illinois collections attorney traffic violations defense slip and fall accidents insurance disputes real estate zoning Buffalo Grove traffic lawyers Illinois traffic accident lawyer Des Plaines tax law firm insurance dispute attorney Des Plaines drug crimes lawyer Des Plaines real estate attorney Barrington attorney Barrington personal injury attorney Illinois trusts attorney fiduciary rule delay jet ski accidents tax attorney Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act civil litigation Rolling Meadows probate lawyer Illinois workplace discrimination attorney advance healthcare directive Crystal Lake traffic attorney insurance denial appeals Buffalo Grove life insurance attorney Crystal Lake traffic lawyer Illinois workers compensation attorney traffic laws Chicago biking tips changes to mortgage law lapse in policy Rolling Meadows estate planning attorney Deer Park motorcycle accident lawyer overtime pay insurance claim dispute Employment Discrimination Law slip and fall Illinois real estate lawyer Barrington litigation attorney Chicago life insurance attorney Palatine employment lawyer insurance adjusters Illinois Sales Representative Act Buffalo Grove personal injury lawyer brain injury Schaumburg elder law lawyer pregnant women foreclosed rental property Des Plaines pet law attorney Des Plaines claims law firm license insurance dispute, insurance dispute lawyers, insurance claim denial, insurance claim delays, Rolling Meadows insurance dispute attorneys Illinois law right to work life insurance claim denial, denial of life insurance claim Inverness insurance attorney estate attorney natural gas Rolling Meadows accident lawyer real estate leasing medical malpractice claims Crystal Lake car accident lawyer food poisoning living trust vs will trusts boating under the influence employment lawyer Buffalo Grove criminal defense lawyer Des Plaines drug lawyer pay when paid contract preventable medical errors liability claims owner responsibility Home Remodeling Repair Act reckless homicide agent Palatine employment attorney Colin Gilbert startup company murder denial of life insurance traumatic brain injury Buffalo Grove employment lawyer special needs trust automated cars drug crime Illinois DUI attorney car crash injuries fiduciary rule first degree murder Illinois real estate drunk driving statistics Illinois Probate Act of 1975 hands free device forming a corporation in Illinois jet ski murder defense rumble strips Riverwoods estate planning lawyer capital gains tax Fair Labor Standards Act probate lawyer Barrington personal injury lawyer bike accident Arlington Heights wills and trusts attorney Illinois traffic attorneys Rolling Meadows personal injury lawyer cell phone tower data South Barrington real estate attorney real estate motorcycle accident sexual images drug crimes lawyer personal injury claim workers compensation benefits Illinois personal injury lawyer drug crimes fault based insurance Chicago insurance claim attorneys business litigation Illinois rollover accident lawyers Illinois personal injury lawyers Des Plaines Traffic Lawyer Barrington criminal lawyer sole proprietorship Schaumburg estate planning lawyer Illinois trucking safety swimming pools auto accidents Des Plaines criminal attorney commercial real estate Palatine punch death criminal defense Rolling Meadows traffic law firm Crystal Lake employment lawyer Arlington Heights medical malpractice lawyer financial advisors Colin H. Gilbert Schaumburg corporate attorney golf accidents