A new federal law has expanded employee options for leave related to military service.
On Jan. 28, President George Bush signed into law the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2008. The law adds a new qualifying reason for leave and a new leave entitlement.
New Qualifying Reason for Leave - Eligible employees are entitled to up to 12 weeks of leave due to "any qualifying exigency" arising from a spouse, child or parent of the employee on active duty, or has been notified of an impending call to active duty status, in support of a contingency operation.
By terms of the statute, the provision requires the Secretary of Labor to issue regulations defining "any qualifying exigency."
New Leave Entitlement - An employee who is the spouse, son, daughter, parent or next of kin of a service member recovering from a serious illness or injury sustained in the line of active duty is entitled up to 26 weeks of leave in a single 12-month period to care for the service member.