If your employer has 15 or more employees, you would probably be eligible for leave under the FMLA (family and medical leave act). The FMLA makes it illegal to retaliate against employees for taking medical leave. The employee is required to notify the employer as soon as practicable (obviously, you wouldn't have to do so while on life support). Your parents' notification is probably sufficient.
This also might be a disability discrimination issue depending on your condition.
Contact an employment lawyer - there might be something here.
The ADA may protect you from discharge and impose upon your employer an obligation to accommodate your disabling medical condition, provided it has more than 15 employees. The FMLA, which potentially would afford you 12 weeks of unpaid leave, requires that you worked full-time for at least one year prior to the leave. The FMLA applies to employers with 50+ employees.
You should contact an employment attorney in your area to discuss your rights in this situation. As the other attorneys have suggested, you may have been eligible to take leave under the Family Medical Leave Act. If certain conditions are met, the FMLA provides you with up to 12 weeks of leave. At the end of that 12 week period, your employer must allow you to return to your old job, or a substantially similar job within the company.
However, like I said, the FMLA has some very specific eligibility requirements, some of which are hours worked during the last year, number of individuals employed by the company within a 75 mile radius, and even your salary in a few limited situations.
I recommend contacting an attorney in your state who is experienced in pursuing claims under the FMLA as soon as possible.
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Employment Employee health benefits Employee benefits Discrimination in the workplace Disability discrimination in the workplace FMLA (Family and Medical Leave Act) and employees Sick leave and work hours Termination of employment Wrongful termination of employment Disability discrimination Discrimination