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No, You Can’t Require Your Employee to Work During an FMLA Leave

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Let’s examine a question I receive all too often — can an employer require an employee to work during an FMLA leave?

So as not to bury the lede, the answer is pretty strong no.

To examine this issue, let’s take a look at Lay v. Louisville-Jefferson Cnty. Metro Gov’t (W.D. Ky. 5/29/18).

Justin Lay, a packer in the Solid Waste Management Division of the Louisville-Jefferson County Metro Government, applied for, and won, a promotion to an equipment operator. The new position required Lay to hold a commercial driver’s license, which the collective bargaining agreement provided three months to obtain.

During that three-months period, however, Lay

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