to Use the Family Medical Leave Act
Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a federal law that requires employers
to allow eligible employees up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave in any
12-month period for certain family related situations. As
a result, qualified University employees are allowed up to 12 weeks of FMLA leave per calendar year.
Who is eligible for FMLA leave?
Faculty and staff are eligible to apply for FMLA leave if they
have been employed for at least 12 months and have worked at least
1,250 hours during the 12 months preceding the date on which FMLA
Who qualifies as "immediate family"?
For purposes of FMLA, immediate family is defined as the employee's
spouse, children under the age of 18 (or older if certified as incapable
of self care because of a mental or physical disability), and the
What situations qualify as FMLA leave?
Eligible employees may request FMLA leave for a serious health
condition of either the employee or a qualified family member; or
for the birth, adoption, or placement for foster care of a child.
Will I be paid during FMLA leave?
The Family Medical Leave Act requires only that unpaid leave be
granted in qualifying circumstances.
However, an individual may elect to use available annual leave
or sick leave during all or part of a period of FMLA leave. The
use of annual or sick leave must meet the requirements set forth
in University Policies and Procedures.
Will my job be protected during FMLA leave?
Employees returning from approved FMLA leave must be restored to
the position held immediately prior to the leave, or to an equivalent
position with equivalent employment benefits, pay and other terms
and conditions of employment.
May FMLA leave be taken on an intermittent basis?
FMLA leave taken because of an employee's serious health condition
or that of a family member may be taken on an intermittent basis
when medically necessary.
FMLA leave for the birth or placement of a child must be taken
within one year of the child's birth or adoption or placement of
a foster child. In all cases, FMLA leave is limited to 12 weeks in
any one calendar year.
If I take unpaid FMLA leave, what happens to the insurance I
have through USC?
If you are taking unpaid FMLA leave, you must continue your normal
premium payments during the period of leave to keep your insurance
benefits. The University will continue to pay it's portion of your
Premium payments must be made to USC's Payroll Office, 1600 Hampton
Street, Columbia, S.C. 29208.
If you do not elect to keep your insurance in force during the
period of unpaid leave, you may re-enroll upon returning from FMLA
leave. You will not be subject to medical examinations or pre-existing
conditions exclusions, unless you were subject to those conditions
prior to the period of leave.
How do I apply for FMLA leave?
To apply for FMLA leave, complete a University of South Carolina
Employee Medical Certification (Form P-75), or submit
a written request to your department head.
If the FMLA leave is for a period of disability greater than 10
days, you must also have a health care professional complete the
Employee Medical Certification (Form P-75).
If the FMLA leave is for the adoption or placement of a child,
you must provide a copy of the adoption papers or a letter from
the attorney or official handling the adoption or foster care arrangement.
You will also need to complete a Employee Request for Leave (Form P-83) for appropriate department approval.
Who can I talk with about FMLA?
If you have questions about FMLA, call the University's Benefits
Office at 803-777-6650, or the human resources office on your campus.
The Benefits Office is located in Suite 803 of 1600 Hampton Street
If you have questions about insurance premium payments, call the
Payroll Office at 803-777-4227.
For more information about Family Medical Leave, you also may refer
to the following University of South Carolina Policies and Procedures: