FMLA leave is a great benefit that many employers provide to employees. It gives employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave to care for a newborn child, a sick family member, or their own serious health condition. But what happens to your health insurance while you’re on FMLA leave? Can you lose it? The answer may surprise you. In this blog post, we will explore the rights and protections that employees have when they take FMLA leave. We will also discuss what happens to health insurance during FMLA leave and how employees can protect themselves from losing coverage.
What is FMLA?
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a federal law that provides employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year for certain medical and family reasons. Employees are also entitled to continued health insurance coverage during their leave under the FMLA. However, if an employee fails to return to work after their leave expires, they may lose their health insurance coverage.
What are the requirements for FMLA?
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) provides eligible employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year for certain family and medical reasons. To be eligible for FMLA leave, an employee must:
1. Work for a covered employer;
2. Have worked for the employer for at least 12 months;
3. Have worked at least 1,250 hours during the 12 months prior to the start of leave; and
4. Work at a location where the employer has 50 or more employees within 75 miles.
What are the consequences of not meeting the requirements for FMLA?
If an employee does not meet the requirements for FMLA, they may be subject to disciplinary action from their employer. This could include being fired, or receiving a written warning. Additionally, the employee may not be eligible for health insurance through their employer if they are not meeting the requirements for FMLA.
Can you lose health insurance while on FMLA?
If you are on leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), you may be wondering if you can lose your health insurance while you are away from work. The answer to this question is complicated, as it depends on a number of factors, including your employer’s health insurance policy and your own personal circumstances.
Generally speaking, your employer is required to continue providing you with health insurance coverage while you are on FMLA leave. However, there are some exceptions to this rule. For example, if you fail to pay your portion of the premium for your health insurance while on leave, your coverage may be terminated. Additionally, if your employer experiences financial difficulties and is forced to terminate its health insurance plan altogether, you will no longer have coverage.
It is also important to note that if you elect to take unpaid FMLA leave, you may be responsible for paying the entire premium for your health insurance coverage. This can be a significant expense, so it is important to budget accordingly if you plan to take unpaid leave.
If you have any questions about whether you can lose your health insurance while on FMLA leave, it is best to speak with an experienced employment law attorney who can evaluate your specific situation.
How to avoid losing health insurance while on FMLA
If you are out on leave for an extended period of time, you may be worried about losing your health insurance coverage. Here are a few tips to help you keep your coverage while you are on FMLA:
1. Check with your employer to see if they offer temporary disability insurance that can help cover your costs while you are away.
2. If you have to purchase your own health insurance, make sure to do so before you go on leave. This way, you will not have a lapse in coverage.
3. Consider using a health care sharing plan. These plans allow members to share the cost of medical expenses, and they may be more affordable than traditional health insurance.
4. Stay up to date on your payments. If you have COBRA or another type of continuation coverage, make sure to keep up with your premium payments. If you miss a payment, you could lose your coverage entirely.
5. Keep in touch with your benefits administrator. They will be able to tell you what steps you need to take to maintain your coverage while on leave.
No, you cannot lose your health insurance while on FMLA. The Family and Medical Leave Act protects your right to keep your health insurance while you are on leave. This means that your employer cannot drop you from their health insurance plan or make any changes to your coverage while you are on leave. If you have any questions about your rights under the FMLA, be sure to talk to an attorney who specializes in employment law.