Can I Take a Leave of Absence?

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At one point or another, just about everyone experiences a significant life event that makes it difficult to attend or perform in the workplace to their fullest capacity. So depending on the specifics, you should not have to use your allotted paid time off or sick days to handle your situation. Rather, you should exercise your right to a leave of absence, as per federal and New Jersey state law. Continue reading to learn whether you can take a leave of absence from your workplace and how an experienced employee rights litigation lawyer in Gloucester County NJ, at The Vigilante Law Firm, P.C., can work to ensure your protection.

Can I take a leave of absence from my New Jersey workplace?

Federal laws, such as the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Family Medical Leave Act, govern mandatory leave. Under these laws, you may be entitled to time off without pay for up to 12 weeks. After this time, you may be permitted to resume your former position or otherwise be placed in an equivalent role in your workplace.

Of note, you may only be eligible for mandatory leave so long as you have worked for your employer for at least 12 months, along with 1,250 hours in the 12 months preceding your leave. What’s more, your reasoning for leaving may fall under one of the following situations:

  • You require time off to provide care to a newborn you have welcomed into your household.
  • You require time off to seek treatment after being diagnosed with a serious health condition.
  • You require time off to provide care to an immediate family member with a serious health condition.
  • You require time off to provide care to your family member who has served in the military.
  • You require time off work due to a qualifying military event from your family member who is deployed overseas.

In turn, there is also such thing as voluntary leave. This is essentially defined as unpaid time off for reasons that otherwise do not qualify for mandated leaves, for employees who have exhausted their allotted paid time off and sick days. There are no specific federal or New Jersey state laws surrounding voluntary leaves of absence. So you may only be afforded this opportunity if mutually agreed upon with your employer within your employment contract.

Is it possible to extend my absence from my New Jersey workplace?

You may be eternally grateful for the 12 weeks you were granted away from the workplace to handle your personal matters. However, it is understandable if you believe that 12 weeks is not enough to get everything settled. Unfortunately, your employer may have the right to deny any leave of absence that extends beyond the federally mandated timeframe. But at the same time, you also have the right to fight for additional time through the legal system.

The best way to ensure your protection in the workplace is to employ one of the skilled New Jersey employment lawyers. So please do not hesitate to get in touch with The Vigilante Law Firm, P.C. today.

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