On April 26, 2016, the U.S. Department of Labor ("DOL") issued "The Employer's Guide to The Family and Medical Leave Act." (https://www.dol.gov/whd/fmla/employerguide.pdf). According to the Guide, it is being provided as "a public service" by the DOL in order to assist employers in meeting their compliance responsibilities and increase their knowledge of the FMLA law. Although the Guide is intended to provide general information only and does not "carry the force of legal opinion," its organization, pinpoint references to the applicable sections of the FMLA regulations, examples of common challenges, and its "Did You Know" sections make this Guide an invaluable resource.

The topical index / table of contents includes:

Chapter 1 – Covered Employees Under The FMLA And Their General Notice Requirements

Chapter 2 – When An Employee Needs FMLA

Chapter 3 – Qualifying Reasons For Leave

Chapter 4 – The Certification Process

Chapter 5 – Military Family Leave

Chapter 6 – During An Employee's FMLA Leave

Chapter 7 – FMLA Prohibitions

Recently, we have assisted several employers with their obligation to provide employees with an eligibility notice and a rights and responsibilities notice. Here, a quick review of the Guide indicates that it provides a summary of the notice requirements, identifies the leave forms that are available for employer use, identifies the applicable regulations, and briefly indicates the liability that an employer is exposing itself to for failing to make a timely eligibility determination. As a result of the comprehensive approach, we recommend that all FMLA eligible employers and human resource representatives download this Guide for future reference.