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Illness related ST Disability being viewed as LOA -> My position is being terminated.

Guest blb

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Seeking your comments/suggestions on the following:

My current employment (since 7/04) as a full time staff nurse is being terminated. I have been out sick since 4/6/05, have exhausted my sick time and have requested STD. I expect to RTW within a month.

I was informed by my employer today that they view STD as a LOA. Since I have not been with the organization for at least 1 year, I am not eligible for a LOA and they are terminating my position effective with the exhaustion of my sick time. I will be paid unused vacation time and they will send me COBRA info. When I am able to RTW, I can reapply for another position (if one is open).

**Due I have any recourse?

**When I am able to RTW and if they do not have a similar position, can I apply for unemployment?

Many thanks..........Barbara

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I am not sure that FMLA and ADA are not applicable in some way.

The first thing that I would do is to check the Employee Handbook, your job description, employment offer or letter and the employee benefits SPD to see is there is any guidance there. I am assuming that you do not have a contract.

The next thing that I would do is contact the EEOC, State dept that regulates Labor and the State dept of Civil Rights, to see what they think. Try to get beyond the telephone CSR and make sure that regardless of what is said verbally, that you get their forms in case you want file a written complaint so as to get a formal answer.

What State are you in?

George D. Burns

Cost Reduction Strategies

Burns and Associates, Inc

www.costreductionstrategies.com(under construction)

www.employeebenefitsstrategies.com(under construction)

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FMLA is not applicable. In order to qualify for FMLA, you have to be with your current employer for 12 months and have worked at least 1,250 hours in the past 12 months. Since blb will not be with her employer 1 year until July 2005, she is not covered for or eligible for FMLA protection.

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You may want to define "STD" and "LOA" for us. In benefits, usually STD is a "Short Term Disability" insurance policy which pays salary replacement benefits when you are unable to work due to disability. Such a policy whether insured or self-insured by the employer, would be subject to written eligibility guidelines which you either meet, or do not. You should be able to obtain a copy of the STD plan documents from the employer. However, your post also describes "LOA" more akin to a "Leave Of Absence" employer policy which might define job protection or other employer-granted rights that regulate how employees on various types of leaves are treated. Generally, "STD" and "LOA" are not interchangeable terms. It is hard for me to tell what your situation is.

Many nurses are represented by unions. If you are, be sure to check with them regarding your rights. They are your representative; put them to work for you.

In California, you would most likely be eligible for UI if you have been terminated from your position and are subsequently able to work. The rules in your state may be different.

Good luck and best wishes for a speedy recovery.

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Just to let you know that the HR Director finally told me there must have been some "mis-communiciation" with my initial HR contact person.

I will be covered by STD and will not be terminated as a result of being out sick!

Thanks to all who replied to my query...........

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