The U.S. Department of Labor released the results of a survey today called Family and Medical Leave Act in 2012: Final Report. More on this interesting survey after the break.
The DOL press release remarkably claims that:
The study shows that employers generally find it easy to comply with the law, and misuse of the FMLA by workers is rare. The vast majority of employers, 91 percent, report that complying with the FMLA has either no noticeable effect or a positive effect on business operations such as employee absenteeism, turnover and morale. Finally, 90 percent of workers return to their employer after FMLA leave, showing little risk to businesses that investment in a worker will be lost as a result of leave granted under the act.
The report’s conclusion contains the following details:
On the worksite side, most covered worksites report little difficulty complying the FMLA (only 14% report “somewhat difficult”; only 1% report “very difficult; weighting by worksite). However, 30 percent report that the cost of administering the FMLA is rising. Similarly, few worksites report negative impacts on “employee productivity, absenteeism, turnover, career advancement, [and] morale, … business profitability” (7% report “somewhat negative”; 1% report “very negative”); and these negative reports are more common among large firms (weighting by employees, 20% report “somewhat negative” and 9% report “very negative”).
Although I have not read thru every statistical appendix and chart, one chart jumped out at me:
33.9% of covered firms have confirmed misuse of leave for a qualifying FMLA reason. (Page 30 of this appendix.)
This statistic would seem to contradict the glowing
propaganda press release issued by the DOL. Let’s just say I am skeptical of the DOL’s conclusions based on my day-to-day experience with the FMLA. Perhaps others will delve more deeply into the statistical analysis in the report.