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Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) -- Frequently Asked Questions

What Happens To My Salary If I Take Leave Under The FMLA?

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The FMLA itself does not provide any compensation while you are on an FMLA leave.

However, either you may elect, or your employer may require, that as part of your FMLA leave, you take whatever paid leave is due you, such as time off for vacation or personal days.

  • If your employer provides you with paid vacation, sick or personal days, you may elect to use up any accrued days as part of the 12 weeks of FMLA leave. (Of course, the benefit of this is that you get paid for those days, whereas pure FMLA leave is unpaid). If you would normally be entitled to a continuation of benefits during your vacation, sick or personal days, you are entitled to those benefits even though the days count against the FMLA period.
  • But note: Even if you decide not to substitute paid leave for a portion of your FMLA unpaid leave, your employer can insist that you do so. In other words, if you need to take off twelve weeks of work, your employer may require that you use up your accrued sick or vacation days during the course of those twelve weeks.

See if you can protect your income by taking an accommodation under the Americans With Disabilities Act rather than leave under the FMLA.

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