Many companies offer leave benefits that allow employees to take time off from work for various reasons. Leave benefits - whether paid, unpaid or partially paid - are generally an agreement between the employer and employee, or employees representative (such as a union).
Family and Medical Leave Act - The Family and Medical Leave Act provides certain employees with up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave per year. It also requires that their group health benefits be maintained during the leave.
Fair Labor Standards Act - While certain types of leave are required by law, other types are voluntary incentives provided by employers. There is a common misconception that Department of Labor regulates leave benefits through the Fair Labor Standards Act. But, the FLSA only covers certain types of leave.
In fact, there are a number of employment practices which FLSA does not regulate. For example, it does not require:
- Vacation, holiday, severance, or sick pay
- Meal or rest periods, holidays off, or vacations
- Premium pay for weekend or holiday work
- Pay raises or fringe benefits
- Discharge notice, reason for discharge, or immediate payment of final wages to terminated employees.