- for the birth and care of the newborn child of the employee;
- for placement with the employee of a son or daughter for adoption or foster care;
- to care for an immediate family member (spouse, child, or parent) with a serious health condition; or
- to take medical leave when the employee is unable to work because of a serious health condition.
FMLA Benefits for Service Members and Their Families
A provision of the 2008 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) altered the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) to assist military family members who need to take unpaid leave to care for an injured service member. The new law allows the spouses, children, parents or other next of kin who provide care for an injured service member to take as many as 26 weeks of unpaid leave in a 12-month period. Normally, eligible employers are permitted 12 weeks of unpaid leave for such family emergencies. There is also a provision in the FMLA that allows for a service member or his or her spouse to take unpaid leave for qualifying exigencies that arise when the service member is called to active duty. The provisions of H.R. 4986 providing FMLA leave to care for a covered service member became effective on January 28, 2008, when the law was enacted. The provisions of H.R. 4986 providing for FMLA leave due to a qualifying exigency arising out of a covered family member's active duty (or call to active duty) status are not effective until the Secretary of Labor issues regulations defining ''qualifying exigencies.''
Employees and other persons may file complaints with the U.S. Department of Labor's Employment Standards Administration (usually through the nearest office of the Wage and Hour Division). The Department of Labor may file suit to ensure compliance and recover damages if a complaint cannot be resolved administratively. Employees also have private rights of action, without involvement of the Department of Labor, to correct violations and recover damages through the courts.
For more information visit the FMLA website or call the Wage-Hour toll-free information and help line at 1-866-4-US-WAGE (1-866-487-9243): a customer service representative is available to assist you with referral information from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. in your time zone.