Reserve And Guard Reemployment Protection Explained

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A Federal law, the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) provides employment protection for any person whose absence from their job is caused by recall to active duty in the military.

To be entitled to reemployment and other employment benefits under the following conditions:

  • the person must have given their employer advance written or verbal notice of recall to active service to their employer;
  • the cumulative length of the absence and of all previous absences with that employer due to military service does not exceed five years (there are some exceptions to this); and
  • the person reports to, or submits an application for reemployment to, such employer.

No notice is required if a person cannot give notice due to military necessity. 

The following is a summary of how USERRA re-employment protection works:

Situations Where Employer is not Required to Reemploy

An employer is not required to reemploy a person if:

  • the employer's circumstances have so changed as to make such reemployment impossible or unreasonable;
  • reemployment would cause an undue hardship on the employer; or
  • the job is of a temporary nature and there is no reasonable expectation that the job will still be available upon a member's return from service.

Notifying Employer After Completion of Service

After a person has completed their mobilization and seeks to return to their old job they must notify their employer, usually it is best to do this in writing and provide proof of service.

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