Some states have laws that require employers to grant employees time off for the birth or adoption of a child, to care for a family member with a serious illness, or for the employee's own illness, but Arizona does not have such a law for private employers. However, most Arizona employers with 50 or more employees will have leave obligations under the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). There is additional information and details on the FMLA.
Same-sex marriage and the FMLA. Under the federal FMLA, a covered "spouse" is a husband or wife as defined or recognized under state law for purposes of marriage in the state where the marriage was celebrated. Same-sex marriages in Arizona became lawful following a federal district court ruling that struck down Arizona’s ban on same-sex marriage (Majors v. Horne, 14 F. Supp. 3d 1313 (D. Arizona 2014)). The state's attorney general declined to defend the state's ban on same-sex marriage. Because marriages between same-sex couples are recognized in the state of Arizona, the federal FMLA’s definition of a “spouse” will apply to employees in a same-sex marriage who were married in the state.
Eligible state employees are entitled to an approved period of paid absence due to:
(1) illness or injury that renders the employee unable to perform the duties of the employee’s position; (2) disability of the employee that is caused by pregnancy, childbirth, miscarriage, or abortion; (3) examination or treatment of the employee by a licensed healthcare practitioner; or (4) illness, injury, disability caused by pregnancy or childbirth, or examination or treatment by a licensed healthcare practitioner of an employee’s spouse, dependent child, or ...