Bonkowski v. Oberg Indus., Inc, No. 14-1239 (3d Cir. 2015)Annotate this Case
Bonkowski worked for Oberg. He has health conditions, including an aortic bicuspid, diabetes, possible aortic aneurysm, and colon removal. On November 14, Bonkowski met with supervisors to discuss his suspension for allegedly sleeping on the job. According to Bonkowski, he experienced shortness of breath, chest pain, and dizziness, and the supervisors gave him permission to go home. He clocked out at 5:18 p.m. That night, his wife drove him to the hospital. He was admitted shortly after midnight. After testing, he was released in the early evening of November 15, with a doctor’s note. On November 16, Oberg notified Bonkowski that his employment was terminated because he had walked off the job on November 14. The district court rejected his suit under the Family Medical Leave Act, 29 U.S.C. 2611(11)(A). The Third Circuit affirmed, based on a Department of Labor regulation, defining a “serious health condition.” The court held that “an overnight stay” means a stay for a substantial period of time from one calendar day to the next calendar day as measured by the time of admission and time of discharge. Bonkowski was admitted and discharged on the same calendar day.