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A Look at Proposed FMLA Changes

Last week, HR blog TLNT posted an article by John Hollon entitled “Top 10 HR Issues for HR Pros? They Haven’t Changed Much This Year.” Once again, the issues of FMLA tracking and coverage remains among the top questions HR professionals have, since changes to the law are happening continuously. For example, the Department of Labor’s 2012 proposed rule implementing FMLA amendments enacted by the National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2010 (FY 2010 NDAA) and the Airline Flight Crew Technical Corrections Act (AFCTCA) will expand who is covered under each of these laws.

Here are some of the proposed changes in a nutshell –

Military Service Member Exigency Leave

Prior to Proposed 2012 Rule Changes - While FY 2010 NDAA immediately expanded coverage to families of the Regular Armed Forces deployed to a foreign country, the definition of foreign country was vague.

Subsequent to Proposed 2012 Rule Change Approval - The definition of foreign country will be expanded to include deployment in international waters.

Military Service Member Caregiver Leave

Prior to Proposed 2012 Rule Changes – FY 2010 did not immediately extend Military Service Member Caregiver leave to veterans because serious injury or illness of a veteran was not defined.

Subsequent to Proposed 2012 Rule Change Approval – The definition of serious injury or illness of a veteran will be defined extending caregiver benefits to veterans meeting the newly defined criteria.

Airline Flight Crew FMLA Entitlement

Prior to Proposed 2012 Rule Changes – The AFCTCA established that non-flight time hours count toward the minimum FMLA requirement but did not institute this rule in a detailed manner.

Subsequent to Proposed 2012 Rule Change Approval – Specific rules will create more detailed service eligibility requirements.

Remember, overextension of FMLA benefits means you’re providing leave benefits which do not count towards the FMLA benefit.

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