Virtual jobs to do while on unpaid FMLA
March 11, 2014 11:52 PM   Subscribe

Where can I find some virtual office work to do while stuck at home with an injury?

I am off work on FMLA for the second time in about a year due to a hip replacement and resulting complications. My medical condition is not very predictable, so I'm not sure how long I will be off work. I'm interested in trying to make ends meet with some short-term, virtual work that I can do from home. I've signed up for TaskRabbit but am wondering if folks know of any other, similar sites. I'm a very fast typist, decent with Excel, and have experience with Quickbooks.

Any suggestions at all would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
posted by amandi to Work & Money (6 answers total) 23 users marked this as a favorite

Working while on FMLA can be. . . problematic. It's not vacation time. Your employer is holding a spot for you while you're too laid up to work. Working from home would tend to undermine that rationale. You might want to talk to HR first.
posted by valkyryn at 6:00 AM on March 12, 2014 [7 favorites]

Best answer: U.S. Department of Labor FAQ:
Q: Are there any restrictions on how I spend my time while on leave?

Employers with established policies regarding outside employment while on paid or unpaid leave may uniformly apply those policies to employees on FMLA leave. Otherwise, the employer may not restrict your activities. The protections of FMLA will not, however, cover situations where the reason for leave no longer exists, where the employee has not provided required notices or certifications, or where the employee has misrepresented the reason for leave.
If you're in the clear per the above, Elance and Textbroker might be up your alley. Try searching for virtual assistant and transcription jobs, too. Transcription can pay really well depending on your speed, experience, and specialization level (this one pays $10/15 minutes transcribed) and as a fellow very fast typist, it's one of the easiest jobs I ever had.
posted by divined by radio at 7:37 AM on March 12, 2014 [5 favorites]

Response by poster: Thanks for the heads-up on possible issues with doing other work while on FMLA. I've read my employee and union contracts, and there are no stipulations stating I cannot do this.
posted by amandi at 1:17 PM on March 12, 2014

posted by Gotanda at 4:04 PM on March 12, 2014

I've been working at Leapforce for 9 months while looking for a "real job" after graduating with a master's. I'm on my second 6-month contract. It's legit and has allowed me to stay afloat. I would recommend reading the reviews on Glassdoor to see the pros and cons. You do have to pass an exam. Memail me if you'd like more info.
posted by rawralphadawg at 7:58 PM on March 13, 2014

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