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7th Circ. Clarifies That Discouraging FMLA Leave Violates Law

By Dorothy Atkins (June 1, 2022, 9:30 PM EDT) — The Seventh Circuit on Wednesday partially revived a civil rights lawsuit filed by a retired Cook County Sheriff’s Office correctional officer against his former employer, holding that discouraging an employee from taking leave may violate the Family and Medical Leave Act, even if the leave request is not formally denied.

In a published, 25-page opinion, an unanimous three-judge panel ruled that workers do not need their FMLA leave requests denied outright to have a viable claim under the statute. Workers only need to show that the employer interfered with their leave requests to state a claim, the opinion said.

“We hope…

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