can a company deny an employee time off for an elective surgery?

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can a company deny an employee time off for an elective surgery?

My wife needs to have her thumb replaced and the surgery is scheduled for next month, she was informed today that she could not have the time off because another employee is on vacation. My wife has all the FMLA time to cover her time off.

Asked on June 5, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

No, if your wife can use FMLA (the company is large enough to be covered and she has worked there long enough and enough hours; you can find the FMLA eligibility criteria on the U.S. Dept. of Labor or DOL website), then she has an absolute right to use it for medical care and the company can neither deny her the time off nor retaliate against her for using FMLA leave then. If they try to do so, she could file a complaint with the Dept. of Labor and/or look to bring a lawsuit.

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

No, if your wife can use FMLA (the company is large enough to be covered and she has worked there long enough and enough hours; you can find the FMLA eligibility criteria on the U.S. Dept. of Labor or DOL website), then she has an absolute right to use it for medical care and the company can neither deny her the time off nor retaliate against her for using FMLA leave then. If they try to do so, she could file a complaint with the Dept. of Labor and/or look to bring a lawsuit.


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