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Employers likely need few reminders about the importance of Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) compliance, though that has not stopped federal regulators from telegraphing their enforcement plans in recent months. 

As with other areas of compliance, employers continue to face litigation around the FMLA, often incurring costly settlements and associated legal fees. Paul Kramer, Director of Compliance at WorkForce Software, walks employers through some considerations. 

FMLA audits can translate into a lengthy process, but things tend to move quickly once the U.S. Department of Labor notifies an employer that an audit will take place, Kramer said. He recommends that employers perform their own audits annually. 

Additionally, employers may have situations in which FMLA leave runs concurrently with other leave. Kramer said determining whether an employee qualifies for different leave can be a key challenge. 

“I think a big problem with leaves that run concurrently is that you have to make sure the employee actually qualifies for each concurrently run leave,” Kramer said. “Different leave laws have different qualification requirements employees must meet to be eligible for the leave and you must make sure the employee meets them before approving the leave.”