The Family and Medical
Leave Act (FMLA) 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.
FMLA is designed to help employees balance their work and family
responsibilities by allowing them to take reasonable unpaid leave for certain
family and medical reasons. It also seeks to accommodate the legitimate
interests of employers and promote equal employment opportunity for men and
FMLA applies to all public agencies, all public and private
elementary and secondary schools, and companies with 50 or more employees.
These employers must provide an eligible employee with up to 12 weeks of unpaid
leave each year for any of the following reasons:
for the birth and care of the newborn child of an
for placement with the employee of a child for adoption or
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.
Employees are eligible for leave if they have worked for their
employer at least 12 months, at least 1,250 hours over the past 12 months, and
work at a location where the company employs 50 or more employees within 75
miles. Whether an employee has worked the minimum 1,250 hours of service is
determined according to FLSA principles for determining compensable hours or
Time taken off work due to pregnancy complications can be counted
against the 12 weeks of family and medical leave.
Special rules apply to employees of local education agencies. The
Department of Labor administers FMLA; however, the
of Personnel Management (OPM) administers FMLA for most federal employees.
DOL Web Pages on This
Compliance Assistance: Family and
Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
Links to various sources of information about
Fact Sheet on
Covers the major requirements of FMLA.
Summarizes FMLA provisions and regulations and provides answers
to the most frequently asked questions.
elaws FMLA Advisor
Advisor provides information about employee eligibility under the law;
including valid reasons for leave; employee/employer notification
responsibilities; and employee rights and benefits.
All covered employers are required to display and keep
displayed a poster prepared by the Department of Labor summarizing the major
provisions of the FMLA.
Laws & Regulations on This
29 CFR Part
What is the Family and Medical Leave Act, and to Whom Does It
Does FMLA Leave Have to be Taken All At Once, or Can It Be
Taken in Parts?