FM and family medical leave

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by splashyone20, Aug 17, 2005.

  1. splashyone20

    splashyone20 New Member

    Does anyone have Chronic Family Medical leave for their FM? Do you also have a problem getting you Dr. to fill out the paper work? My last couple of Dr. feel like I am just trying to get out of work. I have worked the same job for 18 years and have did alot of heavy lifting in my job. My pain is sometimes so intense, that I have to hold on to something to stand up straight. At my job we are not allowed to have restrictions on the job(light duty). I am single and can't afford to be absent for more than a day or so.So I fight thru the pain but there are days when i can't do it. Has anyone found this to be happening to them? I experience the no pain meds mentality from my Dr. also.
  2. rosed2

    rosed2 New Member

    I had one for Fibro and I don't think any doctor wants to fill out paperwork. I got a copy of my records from him and alot of times he mentioned that he again had to fill out paperwork for me like it was a pain for him to do it.

    I think as much as we have to pay them that is the least they can do for us. You just have to keep at them to do it and as always you either have to pay a fee for them to do it or either pay for a full office visit.

    Rosed
  3. splashyone20

    splashyone20 New Member

    Mine stated he didn't feel that family medical was being used as it was suppose to be and would ok my absences from work but not fmla. My co. does not take day at a time Dr. statements. Catch 22. The things that make you go hummmmmm.
  4. NifferA

    NifferA New Member

    I used FMLA for my fibromyalgia before I was also diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. I would recommend that you find a support group in your area and ask for a doctor referral. They should know which doctors are accustomed to completing the disability paperwork.
  5. lvjesus

    lvjesus Member

    I filed FMLA papers for FM. On the way to being dx I had several doctors appts and one trip to the ER and a couple of days after dx that I had to leave because of fatigue.

    My immediate supervisor was very understanding and I knew that there would not be a problem with her, however, I had to take the long view. Suppose she left? Would a new boss see only a string of doctor appts and missed time and not care about the reason?

    I researched FMLA, found out I could apply for it (comanies over 50 employees have to grant it, that is the law), went to my doc and asked him to fill out the form.

    He had never done it so I told him what I found in research, that what he would be signing for (for want of a better phrase) was "intermittent leave". He stated that I had FM and it was an ongoing illness (syndrome, whatever) that could require periodic absenses, etc. My form was pretty specific as to the questions so it was a matter of yes and no for the doc.

    Intermittent leave allows you to take leave in the smallest increment that your payroll system allows. Ours was 1 hour. It usually runs concurrent with any unused sick and/or vacation time (depends on the company) and sick and vacation time must be used before FMLA (also depends on the company).

    All that means is that if you have any unused sick and/or vacation days, you have to use those for your absenses first. Running concurrent means that you get 12 weeks in a 12 month period and any vacation or sick time you take subtracts days from that 12 weeks. So if you have a weeks vacation and you use it for being ill, then you have 11 weeks of FMLA you can still use.

    FMLA is unpaid leave time. Companies are not required to pay you for the time you are out. The company I worked for did, but did not have to. There are some requirements for the company such as saving your job for you or an equivalent one at the same pay, same hours etc.

    In other words, they cannot use FMLA against you to demote you or try to force you to quit.

    If you google FMLA, the first hit should be the government web site, which is where I learned what I know about it and is very easy to navigate.

    I hope that helps.
    Sonya
  6. splashyone20

    splashyone20 New Member

    Thank you Sonya. That was very informative. Our co. does not allow us to use vacation time. We don't have sick days except if you are going to be off 5 or more days. Drs. in Ohio will flat out tell you that they don't believe in intermittent fmla, that is using it for the wrong reasons. The Dr. today said I needed to see a Physciatrist and the pain would go away when I was given Zoloft,prozac or one of the other anti-depressants. HAHA. Won't give you pain meds but will give you crazy pills.
  7. Christinawensell

    Christinawensell New Member

    I am going through this same thing at my work currently. I

    was on full family medical leave in March and came back in

    the first part of June after using all of my vacation pay,

    sick pay and personal days. I just had my doctor fill out

    intermittent family medical leave and it usually takes

    10 business days for you to get them back she said, but I

    told her my work just put me on corrective action because of

    absences (calling them unexcused-even with a doctor's note)

    and saying I needed to start scedualing my appointments

    before or after my work time (which by the way is 8am to

    4:30 pm, now tell me how many doctor's I am going to be

    able to get treatment by. Anyways sorry for the long drawn

    out explaination. I have now turned in the leave papers and

    what it allows me to do is take off for doctor's appointments

    and allows me to be sick and call in and are excused because

    of the family leave. You need though to have the doctor

    be specific at what they want you to be able to leave or

    be absent for - for instance if you are sick or only for

    doctor's appointments, physical therapy app., phycologist

    app. and so on and so forth. The family leave allows you

    up to 480 hours of leave and your job is protected.

    I hope this information helps you in any way. I wish you the

    best with the doctor. My primary care doctor is who filled

    out mine, and if you live in Phoenix, Arizona I could give

    you the name of the doctor and then you truly would be set.

    Best wishes
  8. splashyone20

    splashyone20 New Member

    I work 3rd shift so i understand about appointments for anything. I have to stay up all day to go any appointment. I am also going to see if I can find a local support group. I have read almost every posting here and feel for everyone.Today I was given celebrex again and was told if I asked for any pain killers that I could find a new Dr. Then he stated that I call the shrink. Came home feeling worse than when i left. They say stress is a factor in fibro and then stress you out. Sorry for the rambling. Vickie
  9. splashyone20

    splashyone20 New Member

    I like it when we win one! I will probably have to change Drs. again. Someday i will find one that won't put more stress on me. My dr. also said today that I suffered from Post traumtic stress ...he reasoning is that my daugter pasted away 10 yrs. ago after being born handicapped. And that I have been depressed all these years and didn't know.I just don't know
  10. splashyone20

    splashyone20 New Member

    thanks for the advice.
  11. jaltair

    jaltair New Member

    There hasn't been a problem with it so far, and the Dr. is quite supportive. I rarely take time off, only if the fatigue is so severe that I stay in bed, or if I need to go home early because of the fatigue or pain or both. Most of the time I "stick it out." I find that by working, my mind is taken off of how tired I am or how much I hurt (at least until I'm finished with my work duties!). However, sometimes I pay for "overdoing" at work through flareups etc.

    I think the main reason I have the Dr. do a yearly FMLA statement is so just in case I really become ill due to the FMS/chronic fatigue for an extended time. The FMLA protects my senority, and my health benefits will also be continued through FMLA at my work.

    FMLA is a good thing to pursue .. if your company has 50 or over people, it's the law.
  12. splashyone20

    splashyone20 New Member

    How you decribe you situation is exactly like mine. Except the Dr. is against filling them out. My co. says I am covered with the Fmla, but the Dr. says he won't do it. I don't miss alot but sometimes( like this last week) it is nessecary to be absent.So, instead of being able to take one day off I had to take the whole week off to save my job. My co. has a Time off allowed policy but it requires being off 5 days. He didn't have a problem giving me the dr. statement for the whole week. I went home 2 nights last week that can't not be covered because of the jobe I was doing was killing me. I was on my feet and lifting 50 lbs. I lasted 4 hrs. each night. This was not covered under anything. Just unexcused Home earlys. I can't lose my job over this. i am a single women. I can't afford to even be off.But sometimes it is necessary.
  13. lvjesus

    lvjesus Member

    The doctor needs a physciatrist. nuff said!

    You can use vacation days if you are sick?? Stupid. (I am judgmental today!!) Vacation is for your benefit, company is really on your side huh?

    Jaltair,
    I did not ever get to mine or use my vacation or all my sick time. I, like you, "stuck it out" most days. I have a strong work ethic. I am not exhalting myself by saying this, I want you to understand. Sometimes it is a curse, sometimes a blessing. It keeps me getting up every day and going to work even when I feel like calling in sick even though I am not.

    I also keeps me going to work when I am sick as a dog. My husband always says, is the world going to stop turning if you are not there? I just feel guilty.

    More and more, I do take off if I am really sick, which thank God is not often. At that job after I filed, I left early only one day, I think, but I know not more than 2 and never called in sick for it. I am blessed to have a mild case so far.

    The fatigue was the worse for me. There is no way to describe it to someone else. It is like your body is made of sandbags and you have to drag it around when what you really want to do is lay down and not move or put your head down and close your eyes.

    Many days I fought the fatigue because it was mostly in the afternoons and I would think, just X more hours, just a little longer, I can make it. Silly, but I was proud to be able to make it all day. Part of that is silly, part of that is refusing to give in to this DD.

    When I left that company I still had sick time left as well as plenty of vacation. I have not filed for it here at my new job because I have a better handle on how I am going to feel day to day and know I can make it most days.

    A couple of times I have left early, but not many. The last company paid you for FMLA, this one does not.

    Sonya
  14. splashyone20

    splashyone20 New Member

    My Co. does not pay fmla. I did not take the week off because I wanted to. The Dr. forced me to, by not wanting to fill out fmla papers for intermitent leave. We do not have sick days or can we call in and use a Vacation day. Excess absents or Home early leads to being fired. I do understand where you are coming from, and I am glad you are able to continue to work. Is your job physical? Mine is very physical and my work ethics are good but somedays I can't do it. I also work 3rd shift. Funny thing is I can get paid for the 5 days off. That is why it is frustrating. It all sounds silly to me.
  15. splashyone20

    splashyone20 New Member

    I agree with you. i feel having the fmla on an intermintent basis is what we need. Just in case. Jobs are hard to come by and a job you like is even harder to come by.
  16. lvjesus

    lvjesus Member

    I was thinking of me. I have an office job so I have always had sick days and been able to use vacation if I was ill (except this is a new job so no sick or vacation yet).

    My husband, on the other hand, is a welder and has no sick days either place he has worked. He could take vacation if he was sick though.

    The stupid rationale behind no sick days for the shop employees? They would take them even if they were not sick. And other people wouldn't because they work in the office??? Duh!

    Sonya
  17. splashyone20

    splashyone20 New Member

    I knew you would understand. I just didn't make myself clear. Thanks again for being so helpful.