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Posted on March 3rd 2006 in Family Law

Did you know…Family Medical Leave

Did you know…Family Medical Leave

Did you know that you may be entitled to job-protected leave from your job if an immediate family member falls gravely ill?! Last year, the provincial government amended the Employment Standards Act 2000 to provide employees up to 8 weeks of family medical leave. This leave allows the employee to provide care and support to certain family members who are suffering from a serious medical condition and where the risk of death is imminent.

All employees, whether full-time or part-time, permanent or contract, who are covered by the Employment Standards Act 2000 are entitled to family medical leave.

• The family members for whom family medical leave may be taken are the employee’s spouse, parent (including step and foster parents) and child (including step and foster children).
• Employees are entitled to time off for up to 8 weeks in a 26-week period.
• Although leave must be taken in one week periods, the whole 8 weeks does not have to be taken consecutively.
• Family members must share the 8 weeks of leave.
• The leave is unpaid. However, employees may be entitled to 6 weeks of compassionate care benefits from the Federal government.
• Employees may also be entitled to 10 days unpaid emergency leave in respect of the same family member.
• Employees who plan on taking family medical leave must obtain a certificate from a physician confirming the medical condition and risk of death. They must also notify their employer in writing of their intent to take family medical leave.
• During the course of the leave, the employee’s job and seniority are protected.
• During the course of the leave, the employer is not required to pay the employee’s wages, but is required to pay its share of the premiums to certain benefit plans.

For more information about Family Medical Leave contact the Employment Standards Information Centre at 416-326-7160 or 1-800-531-5551. For information about Compassionate Care Benefits contact your local HRSDC office, which can be found in the Blue Pages of your phone book. 1