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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the limitations of the Family and Medical Leave Act in terms of who it covers and the activities it covers?

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) has certain limitations in terms of who it covers and the activities it covers. Firstly, not all employees are eligible for FMLA benefits. An employee must have worked at least one full year and 1,250 or more hours within that year-long period to be eligible. Additionally, the employee must live within a 75-mile radius of their place of employment. FMLA also only covers specific family members, such as spouses, children, and parents. Family members not covered include in-laws, grandparents, siblings, and domestic partners of both the opposite sex and same sex. In terms of activities, FMLA covers situations such as caring for a family member with a serious health condition, caring for a new child in the home (either through birth, adoption, or foster care), and serving military duty. However, it does not cover all activities. For instance, employers are not legally obligated to provide paid leave for sick days or vacation days.
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