FMLA Discrimination Lawyer Oakland

FMLA Discrimination Lawyer Oakland

FMLA Discrimination Lawyer Oakland

Federal law protects your right to take leave from your job. There are certain requirements you must meet in order to be eligible for this protection, but if it applies, you cannot lose your position as a result of taking protected leave. Learn more about your leave rights under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) by speaking with an FMLA discrimination lawyer in Oakland. 

Your Right to Take Leave Under State and Federal Law

FMLA is a federal law that protects an employee’s right to take leave (in certain situations) for up to twelve weeks in a year without losing their job. It applies if: 

  • Your employer has fifty or more workers
  • You have at least twelve months and 1250 hours of service with your employer
  • You have a serious health condition, or you must care for a parent, spouse, or child with a serious health condition. FMLA also applies if a parent requests leave after the birth, adoption, or foster placement of a child.

In Oakland, employees are also protected by state law. The California Family Rights Act also guarantees that eligible employees will not lose their positions for taking protected leave. Like the FMLA, the CFRA also applies only to employers with fifty or more workers. Employees must also have twelve months and 1250 hours of service in order to be eligible for CFRA leave. There are, however, some critical difference between the FMLA and CFRA: 

  • The CFRA covers employees of any state, county, or civil/political subdivision, regardless of the number of employees. 
  • The CFRA applies to registered domestic partners. This has become less of an issue since the legalization of same-sex marriage nationwide, but it is important to understand for those who are in registered domestic partnerships. 
  • The CFRA requires an employer to maintain all employment benefits during protected leave. FMLA only requires the employer to maintain health benefits. 

What An Employer Cannot Do to Employees Who Take FMLA

So what is considered discrimination that is prohibited under FMLA? Employers do not have to pay employees during their protected leave. They must, however, ensure that the same or equivalent job is available to the worker after he or she returns. An equivalent job is one that is virtually identical in terms of pay, benefits, shift hours, working location, and other terms and conditions of employment. 

While an employer cannot force an employee to take a different shirt or lower-paying job when returning from FMLA, employees are subject to changes that would have affected them regardless of FMLA. For example, if overtime is no longer available or a shift differential is eliminated, these changes would have occurred whether the employee was on leave or not. The employee is subject to these changes upon his or her return. 

Experienced Oakland FMLA Discrimination Lawyers

At Minnis and Smallets, we fight hard to protect the leave rights of Oakland employees under both federal and state law. Contact us today to schedule a consultation. Our experienced employment attorneys will help develop the best legal strategy for your situation so you can get back to work.


If you are looking for advice or representation, please contact us today using the form below and we will promptly respond to your inquiry.

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