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Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

Updated on June 6, 2023 , 1042 views

Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) meaning implies a specific type of labor law that requires larger employers to offer employees access to unpaid leaves in case of serious health issues of family members. Some of the qualified family-related medical reasons could be foster care placement, pregnancy, military leave, adoption, personal or family illness. The act is also known to provide for continuing the health insurance coverage along with job protection when the employee might be on the leave.


The FMLA is aimed at providing families with the necessary time as well as resources when it comes to dealing with family emergencies while guiding employees at the same time.

An Insight into the FMLA

The FMLA serves to be an acknowledgement by the respective federal government of the respective changes in the workplace, families, the expectations of both employers & employees, and the labor force. For instance, the proliferation of households in which both parents tend to work, or for households featuring single parents. The FMLA is known to seek the removal of choice that the parents and workers might have with respect to caring for their children or the entire family and the overall job security.

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It is also referrers to as an acknowledgement that the respective families and children tend to be better off when the mothers are able to participate in early stages of child-rearing along with the outsized roles that women tend to play with respect to caregiving. It also takes into consideration the fact with respect to the role of women as the Default caregiver –all of these having a major impact on the respective working lives.

The Family and Medical Leave Act was signed by the President Bill Clinton on 5th August 1993.

Guarantees of the Family and Medical Leave Act

An employee who might take an unpaid leave falling under the spectrum of the FMLA is deemed as job-protected. This implies that the employee is allowed to return to the same job position before his or her leave started. If the same position becomes unavailable, the employer is required to provide a position that might be significantly equal in pay, responsibility, and benefits.

In order to qualify for FMLA, it is required that the employee is employed by some business with over 50 employees within the 75 mile radius of the respective work site. At the same time, it is also required that the employee should have worked for the given employer for around 12 hours & 1250 hours in the span of last 12 months. The Family and Medical Leave Act is known to mandate job-protected, unpaid leave for around 12 weeks per year.

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