CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – The first significant changes to the Family Medical Leave Act took effect in January, including the addition of military family leave entitlements, the creation of new forms and shifts in the ways leave is designated and defined.
Unum (NYSE:UNM) handles the administration of family and medical leave for nearly 1 million workers, and the company is taking steps to ensure the customers it serves are ready for changes to the 15-year-old Family Medical Leave Act.
“Making sure we understand and respond to these changes is one way Unum relieves the complex burden of administering leave for employers,” said Rob Hecker, vice president of leave management for Unum. “But making sure we answer all our customers’ questions and make them comfortable that Unum is on top of any changes is also a critical piece of that partnership.”
On March 10, Unum and the Disability Management Employer Coalition will host a free forum to offer practical insights and authoritative information on changes to FMLA regulations. Special attention will be paid to the employer, administrative, compliance and legal implications. Presenters will be Angela Ripper, assistant vice president and senior counsel, Leave Management for Unum; and Helen Applewaite, branch director of the Wage/Hour Division, FMLA Group for the U.S. Department of Labor.
To learn more or to register, visit dmec.org, click on the ‘educational events’ tab and select ‘virtual education forum.’
This is the second education forum from Unum on family and medical leave changes. Before the FMLA changes took effect in January, Unum hosted a two-hour webinar attended by 400 customers and other industry representatives to discuss the expansion of the law, potential implications to the customer and to respond to questions.
“Beyond the changes to the federal FMLA regulations, there are more than 100 state-based leave laws that add to the complexity of managing employee leave,” Hecker said. “We’re focused on helping our customers navigate this complicated regulatory environment.”
Unum, an industry leader serving more than 150 employers and their 900,000-plus employees, has offered leave management services since 2000 using an administrative platform developed by the company. The number of employers using Unum’s services has steadily increased as the administrative burdens associated with leave management have grown.
Beginning March 1, Unum will offer a new leave management option for employers who have 100 to 2,000 employees. The service allows new customers who may not have the information technology resources to enroll in Unum’s telephone-based leave management system to opt for a simple, paper-based approach.