OPM extends more benefits to feds in military families

Federal workers will be able to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to address issues arising from the military deployment of a spouse, child or parent starting next month.

The amendment to the Family and Medical Leave Act will help military families manage their personal affairs, said the Office of Personnel Management in regulations that will appear in Friday’s Federal Register and will become effective Oct. 30.

The amendment gives federal workers the same rights as people working in the private sector. FMLA lets family of a service member who is preparing to deploy or already serving overseas use unpaid leave for the following reasons:

Under the amendment, military families may use unpaid leave in other situations on a case-by-case basis and they may have to show proof. An agency could require evidence of a school meeting, for example. The rule permits supervisors to follow up with a phone call to the school to confirm the employee’s attendance.


The Family and Medical Leave Act protects workers from losing their jobs or health benefits while on unpaid leave. It’s commonly used by parents caring for a newborn child or a family member with a serious health condition.


Defense promotes well-being of military families