The Elora Jean & Co. owner has come to you asking for guidance on a few issues that were brought to her attention. With the rapidly growing workforce, an increasing number of employees have requested extended time off from work. The owner does not want to grant the time off because of its effect on productivity.
When asked for examples of the requests, he provides you with the following:
· Employee #1 has been with Elora Jean & Co. for 13 months. She has requested time off to help care for her terminally ill mother-in-law. She is not sure how long she will need to be out of work, but it could be as long as 3 months.
· Employee #2 has been with Elora Jean & Co. for 18 months. His wife just had a baby, and he is asking to take 6 weeks off of work to help with the new responsibilities at home.
· Employee #3 developed health problems since her start with Elora Jean & Co. 7 months ago. Her work attendance is unpredictable. She has exhausted all of her sick days and advised her supervisor that her doctor is requiring her to remain at home for a period of 6 weeks.
As the HR consultant, you have many questions and you would like to gather all of the necessary information before providing additional guidance or recommendations. You are aware of the company’s legal limitations and discretions, such as the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). The owner has also advised you that the company has no formal leave policy for any type of employee absence, other than 7 paid sick days per year.
Part 1 (500–750 words): As a group, engage in a discussion on the Small Group Discussion Board, focusing on the following questions:
· Considering the Elora Jean & Co. work environment and history (124 employees, in business for 18 months, mix of union/nonunion), is the company currently exposed to any legal risk by not having a defined leave policy in place? If so, what are the risks and the penalties for violation?
· Of the 3 employee cases described, discuss whether each one would qualify for FMLA leave. Why or why not?
· For employees who do not qualify under FMLA, what legal discretions would you recommend to the company? Explain other employee leave options for the company without compromising the company’s financial objectives.
Part 2 (500–750 words)As a second step of this group assignment, you must develop a sample leave policy to be presented to the company owner. Be sure the policy covers the key components of a comprehensive leave policy, including requirements for eligibility, leave benefits provided, job restoration, pay, and benefits status while on leave. On a cover page of the policy, outline a summary of your recommendations to the company owner, advising him of the value to Elora Jean & Co. in implementing this policy.
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