Thursday, March 31, 2022
by Levittown United Teachers FMLA Liaison, Jennifer Gorske
The following are some of the most frequent questions our members have regarding family care under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA).
Q: As a member of the LUT, can I take a leave under FMLA to care for someone in my family?
A: Yes. An LUT member can take a leave under FMLA to care for an immediate family member. Immediate family members are defined as a child, mother, father, sibling or spouse.
Q: How much leave time can I take under FMLA?
A: Provided you have enough sick days to do so, you can take up to 30 days of leave and remain on the district payroll. Following the 30 days of leave time, any additional time taken would be unpaid time off district payroll.
Q: What are some of the issues that can come up if I do come off district payroll?
A: Any member who is off district payroll can lose seniority. Should a member not work 100 days in a given school year, they can miss out on a salary step which could impact their pension. Additionally, if you are using the district health insurance, coming off district payroll on an unpaid leave of absence (LOA) will impact your district health insurance. When the district Employee Benefits office is notified that you will be off payroll taking a LOA, they will send you a form to fill out for COBRA coverage and a continuation of health benefits. The form states that if the form is not returned to Employee Benefits within 30 days of the date of the notice, you will lose your right to elect coverage and your coverage will be terminated at the end of said month.
Q: Let’s say I want to apply for leave under FMLA to care for a family member, what information do I need to provide to the district?
A: You will need to request a packet from Lori Pagano in the Levittown District Human Resources Department. You can email Lori at LPagano@levittownschools.com or contact her by calling the Human Resources Department at (516) 434-7036. When you communicate with Lori Pagano, you will need to inform her that you need to take a leave for the care of an immediate family member. Lori Pagano will then send you a packet. The packet will include medical forms that need to be filled out by the doctor of the immediate family member and returned to Lori Pagano.
Q: Can I take a leave for family care under FMLA intermittently, or do I need to take the leave all at once?
A: You can take days intermittently within one year relating to the care of a family member. It is okay if you do not know the specific days in advance. You will just need to indicate in the packet of paperwork you submit to Lori Pagano when the family care will begin. Once the leave is approved, you can enter an absence in the district AESOP system and select FMLA as the reason for the absence(s).
Q: Who can I contact for more information?
A: You can email Jen Gorske at jeniZ27@hotmail.com. You can also contact Lori Pagano in the Levittown District Human Resources Department at LPagano@levittownschools.com or by calling (516) 434-7036.