U.S. Department of Labor FMLA Employee Guide

Wage and Hour Division (WHD)

Family and Medical Leave Act Employee Guide

As part of the Department’s continuing effort to spread the word about the FMLA and make the FMLA more accessible, WHD is releasing an Employee Guide to the FMLA, a 16-page, plain language booklet designed to answer common FMLA questions and clarify who can take FMLA leave and what protections the FMLA provides.

Need Time? The Employee's Guide to The Family and Medical Leave Act

The Employee Guide specifically addresses:

  • Who can use FMLA? (Coverage and Eligibility)
  • When can I use FMLA? (Qualifying reasons to take FMLA)
  • What can the FMLA do for me? (FMLA rights and protections)
  • How do I request FMLA leave?
  • Communication with Employer (Employer and Employee Notices)
  • Medical Certification
  • Returning to Work (Reinstatement rights)
  • How to File a Complaint

The Employee Guide includes three easy-to-follow and informative flow charts that detail how FMLA coverage and eligibility are determined, maps out the FMLA leave process and how the FMLA medical certification process works. It addresses the FMLA definition of "son or daughter", including in loco parentis relationships even if the employee has no biological or legal relationship to the child, as provided in the Department's June 2010 FMLA Administrator Interpretation. It also provides detailed information on how an employee can file an FMLA complaint with the WHD if they believe their FMLA rights have been violated.