Employer responsibilties upon employee’s active duty military leave

The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Act (“USERRA”) establishes rights for active duty military personnel and obligations for their civilian employers. USERRA was intended to assure that active-duty military personnel: (1) aren’t at a disadvantage in their civilian jobs because of their service; (2) are reinstated promptly to their jobs upon their return from service; and (3) aren’t discriminated against because of past, present, or future military service. Employers can fill a position while an employee is on active duty, but must offer to restore the employee to the job and benefits he or she would have attained if you had not been absent due to military service or, in some cases, a comparable job.

Unlike some employment laws which apply only when a company’s employees exceed a threshold amount, USERRA applies to all employers, regardless of size. Penalties for non-compliance can be severe.

Employers are required to provide notice to employees of their rights under USERRA. For more information, see the notice poster provided by the Department of Labor.

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