• FreeAdvice has a new Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, effective May 25, 2018.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our Terms of Service and use of cookies.

Physician won't sign FMLA

Accident - Bankruptcy - Criminal Law / DUI - Business - Consumer - Employment - Family - Immigration - Real Estate - Tax - Traffic - Wills   Please click a topic or scroll down for more.

quincy

Senior Member
#16
I even wonder if your own doctor might sign it. Very understandable that this is affecting your mental health and you need time to deal with it.
I am not sure that Tweedledee would qualify for FMLA on his own as Tweedledee has not mentioned suffering from a serious health condition (unless Tweedledee is in fact seeking medical attention).
 


cbg

I'm a Northern Girl
#17
There is a precedent for an employee qualifying for FMLA as a result of depression over a parent or child passing, but it's going to be very fact specific.
 

quincy

Senior Member
#18
There is a precedent for an employee qualifying for FMLA as a result of depression over a parent or child passing, but it's going to be very fact specific.
I'm curious: Wouldn't that make it more difficult for Tweedledee from an employment standpoint (present or future) if he seeks FMLA for Tweedledee's own mental health reasons?
 
#19
I'm curious: Wouldn't that make it more difficult for Tweedledee from an employment standpoint (present or future) if he seeks FMLA for Tweedledee's own mental health reasons?
It's illegal for an employer to discriminate against an employee due to a mental health condition.

(That being said, I'm sure it happens all the time.)

Also, mental health conditions are often temporary, just like physical health maladies.
 
#20
I'm curious: Wouldn't that make it more difficult for Tweedledee from an employment standpoint (present or future) if he seeks FMLA for Tweedledee's own mental health reasons?
The FMLA limitation is 12 weeks/year. How it would affect future FMLA would depend on the timing and the way the employer counts.
 
#21
It's illegal for an employer to discriminate against an employee due to a mental health condition.

(That being said, I'm sure it happens all the time.)

Also, mental health conditions are often temporary, just like physical health maladies.
It is not discrimination to not protect the job if the employee maxes out on FMLA.
 

quincy

Senior Member
#22
The FMLA limitation is 12 weeks/year. How it would affect future FMLA would depend on the timing and the way the employer counts.
My understanding is that an employer can require that an employee provide a form be filled out by the treating physician (psychologist, psychiatrist) for any mental health leave requested under FMLA and that FMLA leave is granted for "serious" conditions.
 

quincy

Senior Member
#24
Sorry, PayRollHRGuy. I quoted your post but was actually questioning the post made by laurakaye (quoted below).

I believe an employer can require the "treating physician" fill out the mental health care FMLA form rather than one's own personal care physician.

In other words, for a mental health leave, my understanding is that a mental health professional (e.g., psychologist, psychiatrist) needs to sign the FMLA form and, with mental health treatment, there can also be required a "fitness to return to work" form.

In other other words :), I am not sure it is best to take a mental health leave if it is not absolutely necessary.

I even wonder if your own doctor might sign it. Very understandable that this is affecting your mental health and you need time to deal with it.
 
Last edited:

HRZ

Senior Member
#25
Rather than run the risk that the good intentions of HR at your employer are stretched too far too long and you get a requirement to report to work pronto ...why not put a lot more effort into finding a physician or qualifying provider that treats somebody for something and can fill out the forms with the wording favorable to what OP seeks with a straight face.....and satisfy what the HR wants for its files

In some lines of work I would be rather nervous about seeking leave based on own personal mental health
 

cbg

I'm a Northern Girl
#27
If the employer insists on treating this as FMLA (which they need not; given the fact pattern we've been given - they could easily give the OP all the time, paid or unpaid, they want to without activating FMLA at all) I think the best solution is to try the doctor, if any, who is treating the younger siblings. Although there is, as I said, a precedent for an employee to use FMLA for grief-related depression, I am not recommending that the OP attempt that unless his doctor believes he needs it.

But the truth is, while FMLA is not inappropriate under the circumstances, it is also not the only way that leave for the OP can be accomplished if he cannot get a doctor to agree that FMLA is warranted. FMLA is a very specific form of leave with specific parameters and which can only legally be used in certain circumstances. Other forms of leave exist that have no government regulations restricting them and the OP's HR really needs to be thinking out of the box. There is absolutely nothing wrong with or illegal about an employer saying, "Joe, we know you've got a lot of issue going on with your family - take x weeks/months and come back when everything is resolved and your job will be waiting for you - we've got your back". Up to them whether that time is paid or not paid. But it doesn't have to be FMLA, so maybe what the OP needs to be doing is talking to them about alternate possibilities.
 

HRZ

Senior Member
#28
Is this a private sector or public sector employer. And is this paid or unpaid leave ? I've seen employers grant rather open ended unpaid leave for any number of internal reasons
 

quincy

Senior Member
#29
If the employer insists on treating this as FMLA (which they need not; given the fact pattern we've been given - they could easily give the OP all the time, paid or unpaid, they want to without activating FMLA at all) I think the best solution is to try the doctor, if any, who is treating the younger siblings. Although there is, as I said, a precedent for an employee to use FMLA for grief-related depression, I am not recommending that the OP attempt that unless his doctor believes he needs it.

But the truth is, while FMLA is not inappropriate under the circumstances, it is also not the only way that leave for the OP can be accomplished if he cannot get a doctor to agree that FMLA is warranted. FMLA is a very specific form of leave with specific parameters and which can only legally be used in certain circumstances. Other forms of leave exist that have no government regulations restricting them and the OP's HR really needs to be thinking out of the box. There is absolutely nothing wrong with or illegal about an employer saying, "Joe, we know you've got a lot of issue going on with your family - take x weeks/months and come back when everything is resolved and your job will be waiting for you - we've got your back". Up to them whether that time is paid or not paid. But it doesn't have to be FMLA, so maybe what the OP needs to be doing is talking to them about alternate possibilities.
I think exploring options is a good idea. It appears the employer is willing to work with Tweedledee (at least to an extent) which is a big plus.
 
Sponsored Ad

Top