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In Ohio can an employer terminate your employment when you have been off work for an approved medical/personal leave.

West Chester, OH |

My daughter was employed at a company that approved her to be off work from 7/31/12 through 10/22/12 under the Family Medical Leave Act. The company approved a personal leave until 01/01/13 due to complications and then allowed the personal leave to be extended until 02/08/2012 due to the same complications. The company then terminated her on 02/15/2012 by choosing not to extend the personal leave anymore. My daughter requires a 2nd surgery on her foot as the first surgery resulted in a non fusion in her right foot.

Attorney Answers 3


  1. There is possibly an FMLA inference claim here but much more specific information is needed. Your daughter should schedule an initial consultation with an employment discrimination lawyer for evaluation.

    This post is not meant to: 1) contain my signature; 2) contain legal advice; 3) create an attorney/client relationship; or 4) guarantee confidentiality.


  2. My best recommendation would be for your daughter to speak to an employment attorney. Disability discrimination and retaliation for filing for FMLA are both unlawful. If your daughter can perform the essential functions of her job, with or without reasonable accommodation, her employer cannot discriminate with her based on her disability status. Time-off is considered a reasonable accommodation; however, the length of time-off considered reasonable is dictated by several factors.

    Therefore, your daughter should speak to an employment attorney who can go over all the facts of her case in specific detail and inform her of what, if any, legal recourse she may have. My office is located in Centerville, Ohio, and I would be happy to meet with her, if she would like to call and set-up a consultation.

    Lori A. Strobl
    Strobl & Associates, Co. LPA
    1015 E. Centerville Station Rd.
    Centerville, Ohio 45459
    www.strobllaw.com
    (937) 496-1450

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  3. The FMLA requires covered employers to give up to 12 weeks unpaid leave on a rolling year basis to qualifying employees. It appears your daughter exceeded the allowable FMLA leave. A company does not have to hold a position open indefinitely. If she is physically able to work, have her re-apply to the former employer for an open position. If she is qualified, and there is an open position, and they reject her, she may have a failure to hire claim. She also will need to mitigate or lessen her damages by making reasonable efforts to locate a similar job. Also, she should schedule an in-office consultation with an experienced employment attorney to review all possible legal claims and perhaps seek a severance package or company-paid job-seeking assistance or a favorable letter of reference. Good Luck!