In 2008 the FMLA was amended to provide employees with family members serving in the Armed Forces, National Guard and Reserves with FMLA leave for reasons related to their family members’ military service. In 2010 the FMLA was again amended, expanding the military-related leave protections. The FMLA was also amended to include a special eligibility provision for airline flight crew employees.
Military families can find themselves facing great challenges. Caring for an injured service member, arranging for alternative childcare when a spouse is deployed to a foreign country, or attending arrival ceremonies when a loved one returns from a deployment may present family members with difficult decisions about time spent at work versus time spent with family. The FMLA helps to ease the burden that can come with needing time away from work when faced with such commitments.
In announcing this Final Rule, the Department of Labor is taking great steps toward protecting those families who have given so much of themselves to protect us. Provided that FMLA coverage and eligibility requirements are met, family members of current servicemembers and veterans will now have far greater abilities to attend to personal matters and medical needs related to their family members’ service.
Additionally, airline flight crew employees, with their unique work schedules, will have greater access to the benefits of the FMLA and a special method of calculating leave.
Information on FMLA Final Rule Effective Date
Several of the changes to the FMLA regulations made in this Final Rule, including military caregiver leave for a veteran, qualifying exigency leave for parental care, and the special leave calculation method for flight crew employees, became available on the effective date of the Final Rule on March 8, 2013. As the Department noted in the preamble to the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, however, some of the provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2010 and the Airline Flight Crew Technical Corrections Act, such as the expansion of qualifying exigency leave to families of members of the Regular Armed Forces and the special eligibility hours of service requirement for flight crew employees, were effective as of the enactment date of those statutes. 77 FR 8962 (Feb. 15, 2012).
Link to the Military Employee Guide