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Federal Employment Laws: EmployeesNot all of the employment laws referenced apply to all employers or all employees, particularly state and local government agencies. For information on whether a particular employer or employee is covered by a law, please use the links provided for more detailed information.
Some of these laws may not apply to federal employees, or additional laws pertaining just to federal employees may supersede them. Please contact the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) at www.opm.gov/pandemic/index.asp for guidance.
Family and Medical Leave ActIf you miss work because you have the flu or are caring for ill family members, check with the Department of Labor (DOL) for information on whether such leave is covered under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). The FMLA entitles:
- employees working for covered employers to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave during a year for specified family and medical reasons, which may include the flu where complications arise.
- Employees on FMLA leave to the continuation of group health insurance coverage under the same terms as existed before they took FMLA leave.
Other Federal Employment Laws
- If your place of employment has closed permanently or you have been laid off and you have questions about coverage under your employer’s health insurance plan or how to file health insurance claims, check with the Department of Labor for relevant information. Please note that employers offer health benefits on a voluntary basis and federal law does not prevent employers from cutting or reducing benefits in many instances. Employees and their families may have a right to continuation coverage under COBRA if the plan still exists.
- If you have been laid off and have not received your last paycheck, immediate payment may be required by state law (although it is not required by federal law). If your regular payday has passed without payment, contact the DOL’s Wage and Hour Division or your state labor office.
- If you have lost your job, DOL can help you with questions about unemployment insurance.
- If you have questions on workers’ compensation issues, contact your state workers' compensation official . Generally, workers in the private sector are not covered by programs administered by DOL’s Office of Workers' Compensation Programs unless the employee works in shipyards, docks, and over navigable water covered under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA).
- For information on workplace safety and health standards and guidance, check OSHA’s Web site or contact your OSHA regional and area offices or state plan OSHA office, or state consultation program.
- Information on the employment rights for veterans and reservists under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) (USERRA) can be obtained from your local Veterans’ Employment and Training Service ( VETS) office. Another resource for National Guard and Reserve members is the National Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve, an organization within the Department of Defense that can provide information and informal mediation services.