Minnesota employees who find themselves out of work due to an injury face several challenges. One important decision to consider is whether to run their Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) leave concurrently with their workers’ compensation claim. While this decision ultimately depends on individual circumstances, there are several compelling reasons why someone in Minnesota may want to choose this option to maximize their benefits and protections.
Ensuring Job Security
One of the primary benefits of running FMLA leave concurrent with workers’ compensation in Minnesota is job security. FMLA provides qualified employees with up to 12 weeks of job-protected leave in a 12-month period. By running FMLA leave concurrently with workers’ compensation, injured employees can preserve their job security while they recover from their injuries.
Workers’ compensation benefits cover lost wages during the recovery period, but they do not provide the same level of job security as FMLA leave. Running the leaves concurrently allows individuals to maintain their job and avoid potential termination due to extended time off work. This security is especially crucial for employees who anticipate a lengthier recovery period or require additional time for rehabilitation and medical treatment.
Expanding Coverage to Non-Work-Related Health Conditions
Workers’ compensation benefits primarily cover injuries or illnesses resulting from work-related incidents. However, individuals may experience non-work-related health conditions that necessitate time off work. In these cases, running FMLA leave concurrently with workers’ compensation can provide much-needed coverage for non-work-related health conditions.
For example, an employee on workers’ compensation recovering from a work-related back injury may also need time off work to care for an aging parent with a serious health condition. By running FMLA leave concurrently, the employee can protect their job while providing necessary care for their family member during a difficult time.
The Importance of Consultation
While there are clear benefits to running FMLA leave concurrent with workers’ compensation in Minnesota, it is essential for individuals to consult with their HR department, workers’ compensation carrier, or legal counsel. Every situation is unique, and understanding the specific eligibility requirements, limitations, and coordination of both FMLA and workers’ compensation is crucial to make an informed decision.
Individuals should seek advice to ensure they are navigating the intricacies of these laws correctly and obtaining the maximum benefits available to them.
Running FMLA leave concurrent with a workers’ compensation claim can be highly advantageous for employees in Minnesota who are out of work due to an injury. It provides job security, extends leave coverage, addresses non-work-related health conditions, and allows for caregiving responsibilities. However, it is vital for individuals to seek guidance to understand how these options align with their specific circumstances.
If you have questions related to workers’ compensation in Minnesota, reach out to one of our workers’ compensation specialists.