Can I be demoted and relocated when asking to go on medical leave for heart failure?

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Can I be demoted and relocated when asking to go on medical leave for heart failure?

I gave 2 weeks notice to either go on medical leave or quit. Within 2 hours of submitting this notice, after my replacement had been notified and secured, I was told that I was being demoted from store manager to assistant manager and was being transferred to a store an hour and a half away. When the store manager of the other store called me to put me on her schedule, she said the position my district manager approved was that of cashier, even lower than originally offered. And this was all before I had even been given any medical leave. My district manager told me i was a phenomenal store manager and she had no complaints about my work, however she could not let me go because that would make her lose her bonus. Am I also losing my mind on top of being in heart failure or is this completely illegal?

Asked on June 10, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Arizona

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

Because you gave notice that you would quit if not given medical leave, then unless you were guaranteed leave by either a written contract or under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) (see below), you effectively offered to resign--since if not guaranteed leave by a contract or FMLA, you had no right to leave. In this case they could demote and transfer you, since they simply could have accepted your resignation had they wanted to. The problem was you stating that you would quit if not given leave; this forfeited some rights you might otherwise have. 
To be eligible for FMLA leave, you must have worked there at least a year; worked at lease 1,250 hours in the past year; and the employer must have at least 50 employees who work within a 75 mile radius. 
If you were eligible for FMLA leave but were denied it, contact the department of labor.
 


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