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Kentucky FMLA

Private and Public Sector Employees:

Special provisions regarding military service:

  • All employers must provide leave for National Guard members. Leave is provided for those employees who are on active duty or training.
  • Once the employee is released from active duty or training, the employee must be returned to their position with pay, seniority, and any other rights or benefits equal to what would have been in effect if the leave had never occurred.
  • Employers are not required to provide paid leave for this kind of absence.

Public Sector Employees:

This sector includes:

State employees

Kentucky Leave laws (additional to FMLA) for state employees:

Sick Leave

  • Kentucky's family leave law is similar to federal law, but it is only applicable to state employees. Family and medical leave is only available on a calendar-year basis.

Employee eligibility

  • Eligible for up to 12 weeks of family leave if the employee has completed 12 months of service.
  • Must also have worked or been on paid leave at least 1250 hours in the 12 months leading up to the first day of family and medical leave.

Use of sick leave

  • State employees can use accrued sick leave with pay when the employee:
    • Is unable to work due to a medical, dental, or optical exam or treatment.
    • Is disabled due to illness or injury
    • Is needed to care for or transport a member of his or her immediate family that is sick or injured. This sick or injured family member may be in need of assistance to obtain medical attention for a reasonable period of time.
    • Would jeopardize their own health or the health of co-workers due to a contagious illness or dangerous behavior.
    • Suffers the death of a spouse, parent, child, grandparent, brother or sister; or any of their spouses, or any other close relatives. Bereavement leave is limited to three days.
  • An employee who requests leave for personal illness or injury or for a sick or injured family member may need to produce certification from a doctor that the leave is necessary.
  • At the end of paid sick leave, an employee must be returned to his or her former position.
  • Sick leave without pay may be granted for illness or injury of an employee as long as the leave does not exceed one year.
  • If an employee is unable to return to work after one year of unpaid leave, and if he or she was requested to return to work at least ten days prior to the end of that unpaid leave, the employee can be dismissed by the appointing authority.
  • A former employee returning to state employment will be able to retain his or her balance of sick leave upon returning unless he or she was dismissed originally for conduct violations.
  • If an employee has a balance of annual, compensatory, or sick leave, the employer may not designate leave as FMLA leave until either the employee's leave balance has been exhausted or until the employee requests that ten days of accrued sick leave be reserved and to be placed on unpaid FMLA leave.

Leave Sharing

  • If an employee has accrued more than 75 hours of sick leave, any number of hours above the 75th hour may be transferred to any eligible employee.
  • An employee is eligible to receive the hours if
    • Has or has a family member with a medically certified illness, injury, or physical condition that would require 10 or more consecutive days of leave.
    • Has his or her need certified by a doctor.
    • Has exhausted all other leave and
    • Has complied with regulations governing the use of sick leave.
  • If any of the donated leave goes unused, it will be returned to the employee who donated it. This will happen after it has been found that the leave is not needed in connection with the originally stated reason.

Continuation of benefits

  • The state employer's contribution to an employee's health and life insurance must be continued by the employer while the employee is using unpaid family and medical leave.
  • Also, a state employer is required to continue contributing to an employee's health and life insurance while an employee is on paid leave.

Birth or Adoption

  • An employee is entitled to 12 weeks of accrued annual leave, sick leave, unpaid family and medical leave, or a combination of these for the birth, placement, or adoption of a child.
  • There exists for teachers only a special provision for the use of up to 30 days of sick leave following the birth and adoption of a child.
  • Additional days of leave may be granted if a physician confirms that it is necessary.
  • Also, both public and private employers must grant a reasonable amount of personal leave not to exceed six weeks when an employee adopts a child under the age of seven years.

Military Leave

  • An employee who requests leave for military service will be allowed paid leave for 21 days (per fiscal year) without the loss of regular leave.
  • If absence goes beyond the period of paid leave, it will be charged to other forms of leave up to a maximum of six years.
  • Employees requesting military leave must provide a copy of military orders to the employer if it is requested.
  • An employee may have all accumulated annual and compensated leave paid in a lump sum upon request.
Kentucky laws on FMLA

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