Department Of Labor Expands Military Protections Of FMLA


On February 6, 2013, the Department of Labor announced a final rule that will expand protection for military service members’ families under the Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA”).  The final rule, which can be found here, takes effect on March 8, 2013. 

The final rule makes the following major changes to the FMLA:

  • Defining “covered service member” to include certain veterans.
  • Defining a “serious injury or illness” of a covered veteran to constitute any one of four enumerated alternatives, creating a flexible definition of the term.
  • Permitting FMLA eligible employees to obtain certifications from any health care provider authorized to provide certifications under the FMLA, not just Department of Defense affiliated providers as previously required.
  • Replacing the existing definition of “active duty” with two new definitions, “covered active duty” for regular armed forces members and “covered active duty or call to covered active duty” for reserve members, both of which require deployment in a foreign country.
  • Increasing “exigency leave” for rest and recuperation from 5 to 15 calendar days.

In order to ensure compliance with the new rule, employers subject to the FMLA should consult with legal counsel to update their handbooks and FMLA leave policies, as may be necessary

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Cole Schotz | Attorney Advertising

Written by:


Cole Schotz on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:

Sign up to create your digest using LinkedIn*

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.

Already signed up? Log in here

*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.