Employment Rights In The Workplace
When facing a cancer diagnosis, many questions may arise about how one's employment may be affected. The information provided here will hopefully begin to answer some of those questions and provide information about the various laws that protect your rights in the workplace.
Generally, the questions people have regarding their employment and their cancer diagnosis center around two themes: how to protect their job and still be able to take time off and how to ensure that they are not treated differently or discriminated against because of their cancer history. The information provided here is therefore, divided into these two general categories.
In terms of taking time off from work, the federal Family Medical Leave Act is the law that generally applies if certain conditions are met by both the employer and the employee. This law allows eligible employees to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave per 12 month period to care for themselves or their spouse, parent or child's serious health condition.
In terms of protecting against discrimination, the federal Americans with Disabilities Act and the Minnesota Human Rights Act are the main laws that cancer survivors in Minnesota turn to for protection.
When thinking about how the state and federal laws work together, keep in mind that the federal laws apply to all states and that each state must comply with the law's requirements. The federal law sets the floor of what is required to be provided and followed. Individual states may then add to the protections of the federal law, but may not diminish or take away any rights or protections that the federal law sets.
In instances where the state law does not address a specific issue, the federal law's provisions and requirements are controlling.