The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) is a benefit that allows qualified employees to have up to 12 weeks of leave per fiscal year. The law allows eligible employees to take job-protected leave for the birth or adoption of a child, for the care of a child, spouse or parent with a serious health condition, for the employee's own serious health condition, or for the care of a covered military service member.
Eligible employees are entitled to utilize a full allotment of 12 weeks of FMLA benefits for any FMLA-related condition, regardless of whether or not his/her spouse is also employed by the University.
The U.S. Department of Labor has issued a summary entitled Need Time? The Employee's Guide to the Family and Medical Leave Act. This summary is directed primarily to employees in a reader-friendly format.
FMLA Eligibility and Qualification Requirements
Employees must qualify for leave under the FMLA before such leave can be granted; two criteria must be met:
- Must have a total of at least 12 months of state service (employment periods preceding a break in service of more than seven  years are not required to be counted); and
- Must have physically worked 1,250 hours with the state within the 12 months prior to the need for FMLA leave.
Note: Student employees, wage employees, and faculty are eligible for FMLA leave if the above requirements are met.
Serious Health Condition Defined
An illness, injury, impairment or physical/mental condition that involves:
- An overnight stay in a hospital, hospice or residential medical care facility, including any period of incapacity or subsequent treatment in connection with the inpatient care; or
- Continuing treatment by a health care provider, including:
- incapacity of more than three consecutive full calendar days and any subsequent treatment or period of incapacity relating to the same condition that involves treatment two or more times by a health care provider; and
- treatment that results in a regimen of treatment under the provider's supervision. Examples of a continuing regimen of treatment include physical therapy relative to the condition and prescribed medication.
Military Family Leave
Eligible Texas A&M University employees may use FMLA leave for "exigency" time off resulting from a family member's having been called to active duty. The expansion also provides eligible employees with more than the normal 12 weeks of FMLA benefits (referred to as "caregiver leave") to care for a covered service member who is suffering from an injury or illness while on active duty. Read more about FMLA Exigency and Caregiver Leave here.
FMLA Procedures and Instructions
Departments must follow proper notification and documentation procedures when administering FMLA leave. Eligible employees have responsibilities as outlined, such as maintaining appropriate contact with their respective departments and providing sufficient documentation to verify FMLA eligibility.
FMLA Resources for Liaisons and Administrators
The Family and Medical Leave Act Administration Manual contains:
- Flowchart of entire FMLA process
- Forms and instructions
- Important deadline information
FMLA Packet of Information
Download the following forms to have a complete packet of FMLA information to give to your employees. Please arrange your packet in the order given below:
- Cover Letter to Employee
- Employee Rights Under the Family and Medical Leave Act
- Employee Rights Under the Family and Medical Leave Act (Spanish)
- Please choose ONE of the following forms regarding your employee's circumstances and place it in the packet:
- Employee's Position Description (if FMLA leave is for employee's own health condition)
- Military Family Leave Forms (Important: use only if employee is requesting military exigency or caregiver leave)
NEW! Administrators:You may choose to send FMLA information, including the FMLA packet, by email to your employees. Choosing this option will hasten the paperwork process and will save your department the expense of using certified mail. Read the procedures for Sending Family and Medical Leave Act Information through Email.
Parental Leave Act Packet of information (for employees not eligible for FMLA maternal/paternal leave)
Employees who are not eligible for FMLA leave and are requesting time off for the birth of a child or for the placement of a foster/adoptive child in the home are eligible for leave under the state's Parental Leave Act, provided requisite documentation is presented and proper procedures are followed.
- you are encouraged to contact your department's personnel or business services area if you have questions about parental leave.
- Please provide this packet of information below for employees who are not eligible for FMLA leave and are requesting/needing time off for the birth/adoption/foster care placement of a child:
The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA)
Important: GINA prohibits Texas A&M University from acquiring genetic information from its employees. Administrators and Human Resources Liaisons must take steps to ensure that such information is not received. For additional information regarding GINA, please read here.