In New Jersey, employees have the legal right to take time off of work for certain reasons protected under state and federal law. An employer is not allowed to fire you for taking a protected leave of absence and can face serious legal consequences if they do. At the Trabosh Law Firm, our office protects the legal rights of employees throughout New Jersey and does not allow employers to violate your right to a protected leave of absence. Call the office or contact us today to schedule a free consultation of your case.
State and Federal Protections
One of the most well known federal protections for an employee leave of absence is the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). This Act gives employees the right to take up to 12 weeks of protected leave for a serious medical illness, to care for a sick family member, and to bond with a new child. FMLA applies to employers that have 50 or more employees and to employees that have worked for a year prior to taking leave.
New Jersey also has its own Family and Medical Leave Act on the state level that provides additional protection to its workers that need to take a protected leave of absence. Under the New Jersey law, an employee is allowed to take a protected leave up to 12 weeks in any two-year period to care for an ailing family member or to bond with a new child. However, the state law does not provide for an employee who needs to take time off to recover from their own injuries or illnesses. This law also applies to employers of 50 or more employees, and an employee must be employed for a year before utilizing protected leave.
Recently, New Jersey has implemented legislation that permits all employees paid sick leave. The New Jersey Paid Sick Leave Act applies to all New Jersey businesses despite their size or number of employees. The Act requires employers to provide one hour of sick leave for every 30 hours worked, with a maximum of 40 hours in a benefit year.
New Jersey has enacted the New Jersey Security and Financial Empowerment Act (“NJ SAFE Act”) in order to help victims of domestic violence and their families. The NJ SAFE Act provides certain employees with up to 20 days of unpaid leave to address circumstances resulting from domestic or sexual violence. Employers that have at least 25 employees are required to provide protected leave for employees who are victims of domestic or sexual violence to seek medical treatment, receive counseling, seek help from a victim services organization, and prepare for as well as attend any relevant court proceedings. An employee is allowed 20 days of protected leave in any one year period for these purposes.
Contact our Office for a Free Case Evaluation
Have you been fired or retaliated against for taking a protected leave of absence? If so, you may have a claim for damages against your employer for violating your rights to protected leave. If you would like to learn more from an experienced New Jersey employment law attorney, call or contact The Trabosh Law firm today to schedule a free consultation.