State Employees Can Recover Money Damages for FMLA Violations

June 2, 2003

The US Supreme Court has just ruled that state employees can sue their employers for money damages in federal court for violations of the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). The FMLA applies to employers with fifty or more employees within a 75-mile radius and allows covered employees to annually take up to twelve weeks of unpaid leave for personal or family health care reasons or to care for a newborn or adopted child. The Court concluded that state employers should be subject to the FMLA, just like their private sector counterparts. Accordingly, public employers should immediately review their leave policies and procedures to ensure they comply with the FMLA.

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