Obama Administration Announces Proposed Rule Extending FMLA Leave Rights for Same-Sex Couples

By Jeff Nowak on June 20, 2014 Posted in Caring for Family Member, DOL Initiatives, Regulatory Activity

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The Department of Labor announced today a proposed rule that would allow an employee to take FMLA leave to care for a same-sex spouse, regardless of whether the employee lives in a state that recognizes their marital status.  As expected, the DOL has adopted a “state of celebration” rule, in which a spousal status for purposes of FMLA is determined not on the state in which the employee currently resides (as currently stated in the FMLA regulations), but based on the law of the state where the employee was married.  For example, if the employee was married in New York, but now resides with his same-sex spouse in Indiana, the employee will enjoy FMLA rights to care for his spouse as if he had resided in New York.