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Although FMLA is an advancement, the act has numerous gaps. Research shows that because the purpose of FMLA is to broadly aid all companies equally, the government is not able to have full control of FMLA and only establishes rules that dictates who “eligible” employees are (citation). Therefore, not all workers are able to qualify for this program; one has to be employed for at least 12 months in the same company and work a minimum of 1,250 hours prior to approval (The United StatesDepartment of Labor, 2017).
Specifically, researchers analyzed all the states on how well the governmentprotects company employees and awards each statewith a letter grade that best reflects government efforts in that state. Consequently, because of the lack …show more content…
Since 1995, the amount of companies who use FMLA has dropped drastically by almost 25.5% every five years (Waldfogel, 2001). According to Anthony (2008), only 46% of employers are covered by FMLA, which leaves more than 33.6 million individuals unprotected from losing their jobs when they are on maternity leave. Even if by law the company can’t deny an individual FMLA if the employee meets both government requirements (work at least a year and a minimum of 1,250 hours with the company), the business can purposely delay when the individual receives benefits and they may even ask the individual to use their paid leave before final approval (source). The company can also delay the individual’s application by asking for a second opinion from a doctor or request a medical certification and the company is able to deny the application if the second option does not agree that the leave is necessary (U.S. Department of Labor, 2015). As a result, this increases the amount of discrimination in the workforce towards lower class employees. According to Gerstel & McGonagle (1999), women who have higher salaries and can afford to take the time off are most promising to qualify for FMLA, and therefore, are more likely to spend time with their newborn. Their study showed that middle class white mothers are most likely to benefit from FMLA …show more content…
Businesses try to maximize the employee's time in the company and often only allow the mother to go on maternity leave until they are not able to work at all due to their pregnancy. For example, in Alabama, an employee “must work until she is disabled as a result of pregnancy” and even then, the organization may “require a doctor’s verification of disability” making it very difficult for mothers to have time off while pregnant (Employment Law Headquarters, 2012). In way to improve this, the government implemented tax benefits to individuals that donated some of their sick days (up to 80 hours a year) to other mothers, regardless if they do not live in the same state, to increase their maternity leave days (HR Daily Advisor, 2016). Precisely, even though the donor can collectively give 80 hours, each recipient can only collect eight hours each. The recipient must be employed for at least a year and exhaust all their vacation and sick days, as well as provide a certification from their physician before using donated hours (Georgia Institute of Technology, 2015). Even then, if there a disability because of the delivery or pregnancy, the individual is ineligible for the donated

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