Enacted in 1994, the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) establishes rights and responsibilities for uniformed members of the armed forces and their civilian employers.
USERRA requires that, upon returning from duty, Service members must be promptly re-employed in the same position that they would have attained had they not been absent, with the same pay and status, plus other benefits determined by seniority. The act also protects employees from discrimination based on past, present, or future military service.
To be eligible for reemployment rights under USERRA, the Service member must meet five criteria:
When a USERRA-eligible employee returns from service, the employer is required to provide
USERRA also provides, in Section 4311(c)(1), “An employer may not discriminate in employment against or take any adverse employment action against any person because such person has taken an action to enforce a protection afforded any person under this chapter, has testified or otherwise made a statement in or in connection with any proceeding under this chapter, has assisted or otherwise participated in an investigation under this chapter, or has exercised a right provided for in this chapter.”
In cases where discrimination is alleged under USERRA, the employer or prospective employer bears the burden to “prove that the action would have been taken in the absence of such membership, application for membership, or obligation.”
For more information about USERRA, visit