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Family and Medical Leave (FML) Policy changes

From: Human Resources

The Department of Human Resource Management (DHRM) has updated Policy 4.20 – Family and Medical Leave  (FML). Effective Jan. 10, 2023, Policy 4.20 changes the 12-month measurement period from the fixed 12-month period using the leave year to a rolling 12-month period Family and Medical Leave provided in accordance with the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Family Medical Leave is an unpaid leave benefit that provides job protection for a defined period (and a number of hours) and preservation of certain benefits over a measurement period (see the referenced policy for additional details).

A rolling 12-month period looks back to the previous 12 months prior to the requested period of FMLA leave in determining eligibility and the number of Family Medical Leave hours available. Agencies must:

  • Calculate the amount of FML taken during the previous 12-month period; and
  • Determine the amount of FML available for the current request.

The amount of FMLA leave available to the employee is determined by the amount of FML taken during the previous 12 months. Each time an employee uses FML, the remaining unused balance of the 480 work hours is adjusted.

Impact on Virginia Tech employees:

  • The rolling 12-month period is currently used to process FML for employees in faculty positions employees, so there is no change for faculty employees.
  • A set 12-month period of January 1 through December 31 is currently used to process FMLA for staff and wage employees. Applying the rolling 12-month lookback results in a change to the monitoring period for employees in staff and wage positions.
  • Following are some additional provisions:
    • The 12-month measurement method that is the most beneficial to the employee, during the first year of this transition to the 12-month rolling period, must be used. The transition must take place in such a way that employees retain the full benefit of their leave entitlement.
    • Employees who are on an approved FML during the current leave year (prior to Jan. 10, 2023) will continue to be in a certified and approved status through the end of the event. For these employees, there is no need for any action to be taken until the approved time has ended or additional FML is requested by the employee.
    • Employees who have not exercised the FMLA benefit in the prior 12-month period are eligible for 480 FML hours (for full-time status) or the prorated number of hours corresponding to the percentage of hours they are normally scheduled to work (the proration is based on FTE).
    • Employees must also meet the eligibility requirements for FMLA which includes:
      • Employed by the Commonwealth of Virginia for a total of at least 12 months in the past seven years, and
      • Worked for at least 1250 hours in the previous 12-month period. (Note: leave and holiday hours are not counted in the calculation of work hours.)

Please direct any questions to the leave team at

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