Can I be written up for calling in so that I could see my dad who had been rushed to the hospital?

I was supposed to work at 3:30  m and I got a call that my dad was in the hospital. So I called off work and told them why. The next day I was written up for it. Is that right?

Asked on November 29, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Ohio


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

"Right" and "legal" are two very different things.

For whatever it's worth, I personally agree with you--I don't think it was right. However, it was most likely legal. The law does NOT generally require employers to allow staff to take time off for a family medical emergency; the only exception is if the company and you are both covered under the Family and Medical Leave Act and you specifically took the time as FMLA leave. To be covered, the company must have at least 50 employees within a 75 mile radius; you would have had to work there on a full-time (more or less) basis for one year; and also, you have to request FMLA leave. If these conditions apply, you may not be punished for using the leave; but if they don't, the company can set it's own policy about when to write you up.

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