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Does USERRA cover part-time employees?

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in Employment Law,Human Resources

Q. Are part-time employees covered by the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA)? We have a part-time employee who frequently takes time off for National Guard training and was even called to active duty in Iraq last year. He wanted his job back plus the raise others got while he was gone.

A. USERRA protects the job rights of employees who leave their employment to perform military service and prohibits employers from discriminating against employees based on military service. An employer may not deny initial employment, re-employment, retention in employment, promotion or any benefit of employment to a person because of a past, present or future service obligation.

USERRA covers part-time employees as well as probationary employees.

You should have handled the returning employee the same way you handled other soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Matt December 12, 2018 at 9:39 am

I was working as an adjunct faculty for a community college where I taught two classes per week during the spring semester of 2018. They asked me to come back to teach during that summer and planned to keep me on board. I notified them a couple weeks into the semester that I was due to be shipped to Ft. Sill for BCT and OSUT. They told me verbally and in writing that they would continue to work with me upon my return.

When I came back in early October, they acted like they never made this commitment and told me to get in touch with them in January to see if they would have me teaching again…they informed me that they were “all set” for the next semester.

I informed them that under USERRA, that I had to be re-employed upon my return. They said that adjuncts work on an “as needed” basis with no guarantee of re-employment. Are adjunct faculty (being part time and basically probationary) also protected under this law?

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