The New Jersey Family Leave Act (NJFLA), which requires covered employers to grant eligible employees time off from work in connection with the birth or adoption of a child or the serious illness of a parent, child or spouse. The NJFLA’s definition of “parent” includes a parent-in-law or a stepparent. The NJFLA provides for up to twelve weeks of leave in a 24-month period. The 24-month period begins on the first day of the employee’s first NJFLA leave. All employers with 50 or more employees anywhere worldwide must comply with the NJFLA for their New Jersey employees. To be eligible for family leave under the NJFLA, an employee must be employed in New Jersey by a covered employer. The employee also must have been employed for at least twelve (12) months for the employer, and must have worked 1,000 base hours in the preceding twelve (12) months.

Like the NJFLA, federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) also provides time off from work in connection with the birth or adoption of a child or the serious illness of a parent, child or spouse. When an employee takes a leave for a purpose covered by both the FMLA and the NJFLA, the leave simultaneously counts against the employee’s entitlement under both laws. The FMLA provides up to twelve weeks in a 12-month period, rather than a 24-month period as provided in the NJFLA.

The FMLA provides time off from work due to an employee’s own disability, while the NJFLA does not provide covered employees with leave for their own disabilities. Thus, even though an employee may utilize all of his or her allotted time under the federal FMLA due to his or her disability, the employee may subsequently be entitled to time off under the NJFLA in connection with the birth or adoption of a child or the serious illness of a parent, child or spouse.

If your employer is interfering with your right to medical leave or retaliating against you for exercising such right, contact an experienced employment lawyer at Kurkowski Law today.