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FMLA & Family Care Act (FCA)
Personal Health Condition Leave Request Processing

Step 1 - Determine if the FMLA applies to the leave.

The Family Care Act does not apply to personal health conditions, therefore you only need to determine whether a leave request for a personal health condition may be covered by the FMLA by addressing the following questions:

  1. Yes No - Does the employee specifically state that a leave request is being made under the provisions of FMLA?
  2. Yes No - Does the employee indicate that he or she has a serious health condition?
  3. Yes No - Is the employee requesting leave for an extended period of time (three or more days), intermittent leave, or a reduced work schedule because of a health condition?
  4. Yes No - Is the leave request a continuation of a previous request that was determined to be covered by the FMLA?

If the answer to any of the above questions is "Yes," then the leave request may be covered by the FMLA. Proceed to Step 2.

If the answer to each of the above questions is "No," then the leave request is not covered by the FMLA. Handle the leave request in accordance with normal departmental leave approval and processing procedures.

Step 2 - Determine the employee's FMLA eligibility.

  1. Yes No - Has the employee worked for the State of Washington (including UW employment) for at least 12 months?
  2. Yes No - Has the employee worked a total of at least 1250 hours during the 12 month period immediately preceding the leave request?
  3. Yes No - Does the employee have any of his or her entitlement to 12 weeks of FMLA protected leave during the current calendar year left? (Any leave taken during the current calendar year that has been designated in writing as FMLA leave, is deducted from the 12 week calendar year entitlement to determine the remaining amount of FMLA eligibility).

If the answer to all of the above questions is "Yes," the employee's meets FMLA eligibility requirements. Proceed to Step 3.

If the answer to any of the above questions is "No," then the employee does not meet the FMLA eligibility requirements. Depending on the nature of the employee's condition the employee may be covered by the University's disability leave and/or disability accommodation policies.

The FMLA requires that the employer do two things when an employee requests leave that would otherwise be covered by the FMLA, but the employee does not meet FMLA eligibility criteria:

The supervisor should contact the unit's Human Resources Consultant (HRC) to discuss the employee's leave options. Complete the FMLA Notice as described in Step 4 below.

Step 3 - Determine whether to request health care provider certification.

The FMLA allows an employer to obtain health care provider certification of an employee's need for leave. If certification will not be required, the employee's condition is presumed to be covered by the FMLA. Proceed to Step 4.

If health care provider certification will be required, the appropriate UW certification form must be used as it has been designed to comply with the requirements of the FMLA. Supervisors who wish to obtain health care provider certification should discuss the certification requirement with the unit's HRC. Download a copy of the Family and Medical Leave Certification of Health Care Provider form and proceed to Step 4. (Updated health care provider certifications can be requested as often as 30 days, if necessary).

Step 4 - Complete Employee Notification

The FMLA requires that certain information be provided to an employee when a leave request that may be covered by the FMLA is approved or denied.

  1. Prepare the FMLA Notice form letter which complies with the FMLA's employee notification requirements.
  2. Consider including the FMLA Notice Cover Letter which allows you to personalize the leave communication to your employee.
  3. Print the FMLA Information Summary.
  4. Deliver the FMLA Notice and the other documents to your employee within five business days of the employee's leave request, if possible.

Supervisors who have questions about completion of the FMLA Notice form should contact their unit's Human Resources Consultant. Proceed to step 5.

Step 5- Follow up

When an employee is within approximately 2 workweeks of the date he or she is to return to work from Family & Medical Leave or leave taken as a result of a personal serious health condition:

FMLA/FCA Topics