Family & Medical Leave Act Lawyers in Miami

Enforcing the Protections Offered by FMLA

The Family and Medical Leave Act, 29 U.S.C. § 2601 et seq. (the “FMLA”), requires certain employers to provide eligible employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave during a 12-month period. The FMLA also requires that group health benefits be maintained during the leave period.

To preserve the availability of these rights and to enforce them, the FMLA creates two types of claims: interference claims (in which an employee asserts that the employer denied or otherwise interfered with the employee’s substantive rights under the FMLA), and retaliation claims (in which an employee asserts that the employer discriminated against the employee because the employee engaged in activity protected by the FMLA).

In order to establish an interference claim, an employee need only demonstrate by a preponderance of the evidence that the employee was entitled to a benefit that was denied. Krutzig v. Pulte Home Corp., 602 F.3d 1231, 1235 (11th Cir. 2010). To succeed on a retaliation claim, an employee must show that the employer intentionally discriminated against the employee for exercising a right under the FMLA. Martin v. Brevard Cty. Pub. Sch., 543 F.3d 1261, 1267 (11th Cir. 2008). Therefore, unlike with an interference claim, with retaliation claims, an employee faces the increased burden of showing that the employer’s actions were motivated by an impermissible retaliatory or discriminatory animus.

FMLA leave is available:

  • for the birth and care of the newborn child of an employee;
  • for placement with the employee of a child for adoption or foster care;
  • to care for an immediate family member (spouse, child, or parent) with a serious health condition;
  • to take medical leave when the employee is unable to work because of a serious health condition;
  • for qualifying exigencies that arise when the employee’s spouse, son, daughter, or parent is on covered active duty or has been notified of an impending call or order to covered active duty; or
  • to care for a covered servicemember with a serious injury or illness (for up to 26 weeks of unpaid leave).

Employees are generally eligible for leave if they have worked for their employer: (1) at least 12 months, (2) at least 1,250 hours over the past 12 months, and (3) at a location where the company employs 50 or more employees within a 75 mile radius.

The 12 months of employment requirement do not have to be consecutive in order for an employee to qualify for FMLA leave. In general, only employment within seven years is counted unless the break in service is: (1) due to an employee’s fulfillment of military obligations, or (2) governed by a collective bargaining agreement or other written agreement. The 1,250 hours include only those hours actually worked by the employee, which means that paid leave and unpaid leave, sick time, and vacation time are not counted towards the 1,250 hour requirement.

Lawyers from BT Law Group have extensive experience advising clients about, and litigating, claims of interference and retaliation under the FMLA. If you believe your rights have been violated under the FMLA, please contact the attorneys at BT Law Group for a consultation.

Show More
Show Less

Get help now

Talk to a lawyer now

Our Process
1.
Investigate

As a first step, your assigned legal team will gather and review records related to your claim, including any employment contract or offer letter, time sheets, any relevant communications, and any disciplinary actions, including performance improvement plans or termination paperwork.

These documents will help your attorneys evaluate your claims and develop a strategy to obtain the best results for your situation.

2.
Formulate

Once your legal team completes the initial investigation, they will work with you to determine the best legal strategy for your situation. Your legal team will make recommendations and will work with you to formulate the most effective approach to obtain your desired outcome.

3.
Advocate

After you and your legal team formulate the strategy, your legal team will advocate on your behalf to obtain your desired outcome. This could include negotiating a separation package, engaging in pre-suit negotiations, sending a demand letter, and/or filing a charge of discrimination or lawsuit on your behalf.

The attorneys at BT Law are experienced trial lawyers and will advocate for your rights in the courtroom as necessary.

Reviews

Jason and Anisley are one of the best decisions someone can make given the situation. They are knowledgeable, transparent, proactive and communicate with their clients. I have dealt with other attorneys in the past and I’m always frustrated because you don’t get information or you have to chase the attorney and staff down that’s not the case with them.

In finding the right lawyers to represent you, you want to have mutual respect and understanding for each other and clear communication to achieve your goals. BT Law Group is just that. They not only represented me to their fullest abilities, but went above and beyond to truly understand my goals and priorities and provide sound legal advice to achieve such. It was a pleasure working with both Anisley and Jason, I’d highly recommend them.

We very much enjoyed BT Law Group’s founding partner, Anisley Tarragona service and attention to detail. From the onset her approach was practical and conscious of providing the best legal advice while being mindful of suggesting cost effective, conservative solutions. We find her to be a great business partner to service all our employment related legal needs.

I received a prompt and very professional service by the BT Law Group. Ms Tarragona provides tailored advice in the best interest of the client. She was meticulous and explained the pros and cons of my case in very simple terms which allowed me to consider and take the best decision. Very happy with the service. Highly recommended.

Absolutely wonderful and professional services. Represented my mom in a caring and personalized manner. Knowledgeable and ethical. Thank you!

I always consult BT Law Group for employment law matters. They are responsive, practical and efficient. I recommend them to colleagues and friends.

Trusted advisors
Jason D. Berkowitz is a Founding Partner of BT Law Group, PLLC. Prior to starting BT Law, Mr. Berkowitz was a Partner in the Miami office of a national labor and employment law firm where he represented management exclusively.
Anisley Tarragona is a founding partner of BT Law Group, PLLC. Prior to starting BT Law, Ms. Tarragona worked in the Miami office of a national labor and employment law firm where she represented management exclusively. Ms. Tarragona, who was born and raised in Cuba, is fluent in Spanish.