Accommodations & Medical Leaves

Are you in need of a medical leave for yourself or a loved one? Many options are available for you whether on an intermittent schedule, reduced schedule, or in consecutive weeks. 

Federal Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

What is it? The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a federal law that provides eligible employees of covered employers with unpaid, job-protected leave for specified family and medical reasons. 

For How Long? 12 workweeks of leave in a 12-month period for all leave excluding care for a covered servicemember with a serious injury or illness then they would be entitled to 26 workweeks in a 12-month period. 

Qualifications Requirements? Works for a covered employer; Has worked for the employer for at least 12 months; Has at least 1,250 hours of service for the employer during the 12 month period immediately preceding the leave; and Works at a location where the employer has at least 50 employees within 75 miles.

Traditional leave is FMLA leave taken for the entire 12 consecutive workweeks due to a single qualifying reason. 

Intermittent leave is FMLA leave taken in separate blocks of time due to a single qualifying reason.

Reduced leave schedule is a leave schedule that reduces an employee's usual number of working hours per workweek, or hours per workday. A reduced leave schedule is a change in the employee's schedule for a period of time, normally from full-time to part-time.

Minimum increment. When an employee takes FMLA leave on an intermittent or reduced leave schedule basis, the employer must account for the leave using an increment no greater than the shortest period of time that the employer uses to account for use of other forms of leave provided that it is not greater than one hour and provided further that an employee's FMLA leave entitlement may not be reduced by more than the amount of leave actually taken. An employer may not require an employee to take more leave than is necessary to address the circumstances that precipitated the need for the leave, provided that the leave is counted using the shortest increment of leave used to account for any other type of leave.

Rhode Island Parental & Family Medical Leave Act (RIPFMLA)

RIPFMLA grants employees thirteen consecutive work weeks of unpaid leave in any two (2) calendar years. 

RIPFMLA does not apply to care for sick or injured service members or qualifying exigencies.

Employees must have been employees for twelve (12) months averaging at least thirty (30) hours per week to be eligible. 

If FMLA and RIPFMLA both apply, the employer is required to follow the law that grants the employee greater rights. 

FMLA and RIPFMLA will run concurrently.

RIPFMLA allows for care for an in-law with a serious health condition. 

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)

An individual with a disability is a person who: has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities; has a record of such an impairment; or is regarded as having such an impairment. 

Reasonable accommodation may include, but is not limited to: making existing facilities used by employees readily accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities. Job restructuring, modifying work schedules, reassignment to a vacant position; acquiring or modifying equipment or devices, adjusting or modifying examinations, training materials, or policies, and providing qualified readers or interpreters.

An employer is required to make a reasonable accommodation to the known disability of a qualified applicant or employee if it would not impose an "undue hardship" on the operation of the employer's business. 


Under the ADA, an employee who needs leave related to his/her disability is entitled to such leave if there is no other effective accommodation and the leave will not cause undue hardship.

An employee's position, the ADA requires that the employer hold it open while the employee is on leave unless it can show that doing so causes undue hardship. 

When the employee is ready to return to work, the employer must allow the individual to return to the same position (assuming that there was no undue hardship in holding it open) if the employee is still qualified (i.e., the employee can perform the essential functions of the position with or without reasonable accommodation).


U.S. Department of Labor -

U.S. DOL Employers Guide to FMLA -

Subsection F of FMLA -



ADA Employer Guidance -

ADA Enforcement Guidance -