How much extra leave is reasonable for an employee who has exhausted FMLA but is not yet capable of returning to work? Does an employer have to keep the absent employee’s job open?  What medical evidence is needed?   How much interactive dialogue is enough?  What about an employee is who is unreasonable and/or demanding?

A recent opinion from the Eighth Circuit provides helpful guidance about these and other problems employers face when deciding whether extended medical leave is a reasonable accommodation for an employee with a serious medical condition who is not yet capable of returning to work. See Brunckhorst v. City of Oak Park Heights, (8th Cir. 2/4/2019).


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Fixed or no-fault leave policies were once considered easy way to manage attendance and long term leave of absence issues.   Once the employee reaches the maximum number of absences, or is gone the maximum number of weeks on medical leave, the employee is terminated; no questions asked, no exceptions.   The benefit of these kinds of

FMLA provides a qualifying employee up twelve weeks of job protected leave. That means the employee is entitled to return to the same position held before the leave, or to an “equivalent position” with equivalent pay, benefits, and other terms and conditions.   FMLA does not require an employer to restore employment if the employee is

An update on H1N1–the confirmed number of cases in Iowa is now 60, and perhaps growing.   That is up 17 cases since our last post on this subject two days ago.   In addition to the existing public health and employer challenges this disease presents, will a potential pandemic provide the impetus for Congress to

Just days after the Iowa Supreme Court’s ruling legalizing same sex marriage, at least one media outlet is reporting that Iowa employers are scrambling to determine whether they need to adjust their employment policies to comply with the ruling.  Of immediate concern are employee benefit programs that provide coverage for spouses, and policies governing family and medical