Employment: New Law Passed Which Impacts Military Provisions
President Obama signed the Defense Authorization Act of 2010 on October 28, 2009. Within the literally hundreds of pages appears Section 565, which amends the military leave provisions of the Family and Medical Leave Act. In a nutshell, this law expands some of the definitions to provide even broader rights. For example, qualifying exigency leave may now be available to the family of a member of the regular Armed Forces during deployment to a foreign country. Qualifying exigency leave may also be available to the families of covered military members deployed to a foreign country, even if not in support of a contingency operation.
With regard to military caregiver leave (the 26 weeks), it is expanded to include certain veterans.
If you are an employer who employs at least 50 employees, you are covered by the Family and Medical Leave Act. You are required to post the FMLA notice and have a policy for your employees. These documents may need to be updated to reflect the changes in the law. Until you get those documents updated, remember that the military leave provisions have been expanded. Do not deny leave under these provisions without being certain it is not covered.
By Kristen L. Brightmire, firstname.lastname@example.org