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LawTalk, Attorney
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 37639
Experience:  I have 30 years of experience in the practice of law, including employment law and discrimination law.
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I have an employee that went out on materity leave on

Customer Question

I have an employee that went out on materity leave on 02/28/15 and has not returned. She has not contacted me regarding her wishes to return and has told some of my staff that she is not sure is she wants to come back. She has had the baby and they are both doing well. I have no problem if she dose not return. I just want to know my rights as an employer. I own a small business and with her out, I'm short a staff member. I just want to know if I can release her and hire someone to replace her.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: California Employment Law
Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.

Good afternoon,

I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today. In order to give you a clear and concise answer, I will need some additional information about the circumstances, please.

1. How many employees do you have?


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hey Doug,I have 10 employees
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The employee that is out on materity leave is my RVT. She is currently my only Registered Veterinary Techinician. Her being out means my doctors are without the staff member that assists them in surgery.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This employee also started working for our company in Oct. 2014 and waited until almost the end of her 90 day probation period to tell everyone she was pregnant.
Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.

Good afternoon,

Thanks for the additional information.

Based on both the number of employees that you employ, and the amount of time that your employee has been with your company, she is entitled to neither the benefits of the FMLA or the CFRA---which allow up to 12 weeks of leave for having a baby and for bonding time.

Under CA law your employee was entitle to take 6 to 8 weeks of maternity leave disability and after that if she was still disabled she would be eligible for additional state disability. If she were disabled she would have been eligible for 4 months off---but that time has now well been surpassed and she is on leave only based on your generosity.

However she is not entitled to paid or unpaid leave for this extended time from your practice and you are free to terminate her now anytime you wish and replace her with a new employee.

You may reply back to me using the Reply link and I will be happy to continue to assist you until I am able to address your concerns, to your satisfaction.

Please remember to rate my service to you so that I can be compensated for helping you. Thank you in advance.

I wish you and yours the best in 2015,


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Doug, Thank you for the information. Should I quote it in my letter of termination.
Expert:  LawTalk replied 1 year ago.

Good morning Linda,

It is never really a good idea to provide any reason to an employee for their termination unless you are terminating them for cause---and then simply be specific as to the reason for their termination. In this case, you should simply tell them that because they have never returned from maternity leave, that you are replacing them and have to let them go.

Thank you for your kind words. They are appreciated.

Please understand that in order for me to be compensated for having helped you, I need for you to positively rate my service to you by clicking on the rating stars---three stars or more. It is that easy.

Thanks in advance.

I wish you the best,


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