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February 12, 2010
Requesting FMLA Medical Certification

In a 2010 BLR webinar, “Solving PTO Problems: How to Reduce Unscheduled Absences Without Alienating Employees or Violating the Law,” attorney Catherine Moreton Gray outlined when employers may request certification under the Family and Medical Leave Act, and what may be considered.

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An employer may request certification:

  • Within five business days after a foreseeable leave request is made
  • Within five business days after unforeseeable leave begins
  • Later, if the employer has reason to question the legitimacy of the leave

What employers may consider is limited to the condition at issue, and limited to the information set forth in the regulations.

If the leave is covered by Workers’ Compensation, the Americans with Disabilities Act, or a disability plan, which requires additional information, the information can be used to determine FMLA designation.

Catherine Moreton Gray is an associate attorney in the Labor and Employment section of Robinson & Cole LLP in Hartford, Conn. She has more than 20 years of experience in human resources and employment law. Contact her at

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