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2022 FMLA Virtual Master Class: Basic Skills for Employee Leave Management

2022 FMLA Virtual Master Class: Basic Skills for Employee Leave Management

Product Code: VFM07212022

1st Attendee $449.00*
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BONUS: Despite the fact that the vaccine mandate is not going into effect, employers can still legally require their workers to get vaccinated as a condition of employment. When you register, you'll receive a FREE COVID-19 Vaccination Paid Leave Policy template which can be customized to create a paid leave policy for COVID-19 vaccinations that best fits your organization.

2022 FMLA Virtual Master Class: Basic Skills for Employee Leave Management

Thursday, July 21 – Friday,July 22, 2022
12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. Eastern, daily

Managing leave in the new normal has come with many challenges. But one thing that remains constant is the need for employers to ensure that all HR staff and all managers who deal with employee leave requests are well-versed in the finer details of one of the trickiest employment laws.

HR professionals, in particular, should understand who is eligible for leave, how much they’re eligible for, how you track FMLA absences, and how intermittent FMLA leave is managed.

Administering FMLA leave can be made easier if you have a clear procedure that employees understand and can easily utilize when the need for leave arises. Additionally, HR professionals must understand the various forms and deadlines for remaining compliant under the FMLA, in addition to other federal laws like the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and workers’ compensation claims.

Become a master of the FMLA and simplify your leave program by uncovering the basics of the FMLA in one of our most popular virtual master class, where you’ll learn:

  • How to determine FMLA eligibility quickly and easily;
  • What qualifies as a serious health condition;
  • Tips and guidance for “gray area” conditions, including multiple concurrent conditions;
  • The “do’s and don’ts” of return-to-work certifications;
  • Handling suspected FMLA abuse without running afoul of the law;
  • How to manage intermittent and reduced-schedule leave;
  • How the FMLA and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) interact;
  • And more!

Check out what previous attendees have said about this virtual master class:

“Very informative/comprehensive. Good examples/hypotheticals too.”

“Incredibly informative and well put together, I really appreciated the real-world scenarios to practice and apply what was discussed.”

“Great program – the examples were helpful to apply the knowledge to unique circumstances. Even though I have been handling FMLA already, I found every minute of this course useful.”

“I enjoyed it and I received a lot of beneficial information. It was a refresher for me, but I also learned other things as well.”

*Attendees will also receive 60-day access to the on-demand recording of this course.

2022 FMLA Virtual Master Class: Basic Skills for Employee Leave Management


Day 1—Mastering FMLA Fundamentals

12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.
FMLA Eligibility: Getting It Right

Establishing employee eligibility is the critical first step in administering FMLA leave, and it’s a step that’s easily overlooked in the flurry of notices and certifications that follow a request for leave. But confirming that employees are eligible to take requested leave in the first place sets the foundation for a fair and consistently applied leave program.

This topic will also serve as the foundation for our program, as we’ll use this introductory session to briefly assess your current knowledge of FMLA fundamentals. We’ll also highlight recent trends and developments affecting leave and discuss how to proactively adjust your policies and practices to ensure compliance with the ever-changing regulatory, legal, and practical landscape.

We’ll cover:

  • A quick overview of FMLA basic requirements;
  • How to determine FMLA eligibility quickly and easily;
  • How the FMLA rules and related court decisions affect key definitions, such as who qualifies as a covered family member;
  • How the FMLA is interpreted as allowing leave to employees to care for other family members suffering from a serious health condition; and
  • A discussion of state-specific FMLA laws, which provide more job-protected leave and have lower thresholds for application; and
  • Recent trends and developments affecting leave.

1:00 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.

1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.
Managing Serious Health Conditions and Medical Certifications

At the heart of many FMLA leave requests is the serious health condition. Whether the condition is the employee’s own or that of a covered family member, employers will often need additional guidance to assess whether a condition qualifies for FMLA leave. In addition, there are many things you can do to award leave time correctly and prevent FMLA abuse. Understanding your rights to request certification—and to delay or deny leave when certification is incomplete or insufficient—is an empowering tool in your leave toolbox.

The DOL has proposed revisions to several model certification forms, which employers nationwide often use to administer FMLA leave. This session will cover the latest updates concerning the DOL’s proposed revisions and the practical impact this development could have on:

  • WH-380E Certification of Health Care Provider for Employee's Serious Health Condition; WH-380F Certification of Health Care Provider for Family Member’s Serious Health Condition;
  • WH-381 Notice of Eligibility and Rights and Responsibilities; WH-382 Designation Notice;
  • WH-384 Certification for Military Family Leave for Qualifying Exigency;
  • WH-385 Certification for Serious Injury or Illness of a Current Servicemember for Military Caregiver Leave; and
  • WH-385V Certification for Serious Injury or Illness of a Veteran for Military Caregiver Leave

We’ll also discuss the process of requesting recertification in compliance with FMLA requirements, as well as the steps you must take if you wish to require a medical release for return to work (aka fitness-for-duty certification).

You’ll learn:

  • How to spot a serious health condition on the FMLA certification;
  • Tips and guidance for “gray area” conditions, including multiple concurrent conditions;
  • How to obtain additional information and how to verify when the initial medical certification is vague or incomplete;
  • What to check when an employee wants leave to attend special education meetings for his or her child;
  • Your options when an employee or doctor doesn’t cooperate with obtaining the required certifications;
  • How to handle recertification requests;
  • How to prepare a successful and practical return to work policy; and
  • Return to work strategies that work, and strategies that can backfire.

2:15 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Meeting FMLA Deadlines: Notification, Curbing Abuse, and Preventing Claims

The FMLA is ruled by deadlines for giving and receiving information, for measuring how much leave has been taken, and for determining how much leave employees have remaining in a given year. A good grasp of timing rules—and learning how to monitor other key areas of FMLA usage—can help you prevent abuse of FMLA entitlements and fend off litigation. This session covers:

  • How to give the four kinds of FMLA notices;
  • What to do if an employee refuses an FMLA designation;
  • Selecting the best FMLA leave calendar year for your organization;
  • What to do when vacations and/or holidays fall during an employee’s FMLA leave;
  • Rules regarding “making up” FMLA leave;
  • Handling suspected FMLA abuse without running afoul of the law;
  • How to manage employee leave without risking claims of interference;
  • How to legally discharge employees who are on or just returned from FMLA leave; and
  • How to train supervisory staff to avoid asking questions or taking action that can spark liability.

3:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Q&A with Presenters

Have lingering questions about points raised during the first day of this intensive FMLA hypo-driven workshop, or want to revisit a fundamental concept or two from earlier in the day? Take advantage of this opportunity to get clarification from the presenting attorneys before you wrap up for the day.

Day 2—Intensive Workshop Addressing the Real-Life Application of FMLA Rules, DOL Regulations, and Court Rulings

12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Mastering the Tough FMLA Issues

It’s one thing to grasp individual FMLA rules, but it’s another thing entirely to put those pieces together in the real world. For example, intermittent leave seems pretty straightforward on paper, but how employers really manage it is another story. What about temporary light-duty positions and fluctuating work schedules? Reinstatement after leave? And finally, how do you handle an FMLA investigation by the Department of Labor (DOL)? This session will help you learn:

  • What “intermittent” means and how the 12-week FMLA entitlement is calculated when an employee takes intermittent or reduced-schedule;
  • How to handle leave duration;
  • How to calculate leave for fluctuating work schedules;
  • The rules regarding substitution of various types of paid leave for FMLA leave;
  • When employees have job reinstatement rights and when they do not;
  • How eligibility requirements are clarified for employees who are jointly employed;
  • Tips on how to effectively manage an FMLA investigation by the DOL; and
  • How to conduct a successful self-audit to ensure compliance with FMLA and its policies.

1:00 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.

1:15 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.
All Together Now: Coordinating FMLA with ADA, Workers’ Comp, and State Family Leave Laws

The FMLA appears comprehensive, but it’s not the only law that applies when employees need time off for their own serious health condition, to care for a family member, or for other reasons. You need to know when other laws create different obligations—and how their requirements work in tandem with the FMLA. In this session, we’ll cover:

  • How the FMLA and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) interact;
  • How to balance your obligations under the FMLA, ADA, and other laws;
  • When you should offer leave as a reasonable accommodation under the ADA, including a discussion of ADA leave cases and agency guidance;
  • How to offer accommodations other than leave without violating the FMLA;
  • When you can require employees to take FMLA leave concurrently with workers’ comp leave; and
  • Recent developments in state leave laws, including paid sick leave, family leave, pregnancy accommodation, and other trends.

2:15 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Intensive Workshop: Applying Your Knowledge

During this highly interactive portion of the FMLA Master Class, your trainers, who are practicing labor and employment attorneys, will walk you through a series of scenarios demonstrating the real-life FMLA issues that stump even the most seasoned HR practitioners.

You’ll have the opportunity to discuss issues with your presenters and fellow attendees to determine the correct course of action to take based on the facts presented and your knowledge of fundamental FMLA compliance principles.

Recent court rulings, long-standing case law precedent, DOL interpretations, opinion letters, and regulations—as well as the trainers’ own experiences in advising clients—are interwoven into this engaging afternoon workshop, with the goal of providing you with actionable insights into the tricky FMLA issues that come up in daily work life.

You’ll dive deep into:

1. Addressing issues with medical certifications and what to do when:

  • Certification submitted by the employee is not sufficient
  • The employee does not return the certification
  • The employee refuses to update the certification if the need for leave changes
  • The employee does not submit fitness-for-duty certification at the end of leave

2. Intermittent leave:

  • Certification of the need for intermittent leave
  • Specific information on when leave is needed and the expected frequency and duration
  • What to do if an employee uses more leave than expected
  • What to do when an employee has a chronic case of "Monday-Friday absence-itis”

3. Reduced-schedule leave:

  • Certification and specific information on reduced hours and expected duration
  • Updating certification
  • Tracking leave time

4. FMLA during holidays and shutdowns:

  • How to “count” FMLA leave during holidays
  • Administering FMLA leave during extended plant or office shutdowns
  • Determining whether an employee on FMLA leave during holidays is entitled to holiday pay

5. Addressing performance issues that arise before the request for leave:

  • What to do when an employee requests FMLA leave in the midst of the disciplinary process or just before discipline or termination steps are taken
  • Addressing performance issues that arise during intermittent or reduced-schedule leave
  • Addressing performance issues discovered while an employee is on leave
  • Reductions in force while the employee is on FMLA leave

6. Return to work—what to do if an employee is:

  • Not able to return to work at the end of leave (ADA considerations)
  • Cleared to return to work with restrictions
  • Temporarily unable to perform essential functions
  • Unable to perform essential functions in the long term

3:30 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Q&A with Presenters

Still have questions about items covered during this intensive FMLA training, or want to revisit a key idea or two from earlier in the course? Use this time to get clarification from the presenters before the workshop ends.

— Agenda subject to change —

2022 FMLA Virtual Master Class: Basic Skills for Employee Leave Management


Deborah J. Livesay, Partner, Taylor English

Deborah Livesay focuses her practice exclusively in the area of labor and employment. She has spent the last 23 years representing management in all aspects of the employment relationship. Livesay routinely defends employers in employment-related litigation in various jurisdictions across the country, including litigation involving discrimination and harassment claims, wage and hour class actions, breach of employment contracts and restrictive covenants, and state tort claims.

Livesay represents a wide range of corporate clients in matters before federal, state, and local government agencies, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the U.S. Department of Labor. She also helps clients achieve early resolution of employment claims through mediation and arbitration.

Livesay also routinely advises clients on and helps clients develop proactive strategies for compliance with federal and state employment laws in areas such as employment discrimination (Title VII), Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), restrictive covenants, substance abuse, wage and hour, and the WARN Act. She also advises clients on employment policy design and review, reductions-in-force, and plant closings; conducts management training programs, oversees internal investigations; and negotiates and drafts executive employment, restrictive covenant, and separation agreements.

Ann R. Schildhammer, Partner, Taylor English

Ann Schildhammer is an experienced litigator whose practice concentrates in general business/commercial litigation, employment litigation and HR counseling, personal injury defense, premises liability, and real estate and title litigation. Utilizing her experience as former general counsel for a top-40 home building company, she also provides general business advice in the areas of legal and regulatory compliance matters, risk management and the supervision of outside legal counsel.

Schildhammer has extensive experience handling all aspects of commercial litigation, including breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, and related tort claims such as fraud and negligence. In her employment practice, she has successfully resolved numerous employment discrimination claims, wrongful termination matters, and claims involving restrictive covenant agreements. Schildhammer also frequently provides management and employee sensitivity training on various HR issues, including sexual harassment; conducts internal employment audits; and prepares and provides advice on employment contracts and separation agreements.

2022 FMLA Virtual Master Class: Basic Skills for Employee Leave Management

Frequently Asked Questions

What computer set-up do I need to attend this class?

This will be hosted on the GoToMeeting platform. Attendees should have access to a computer that has a microphone and speakers/headphone connection to participate. There is also an option to dial in if needed. You can read the full system requirements for GoToMeeting by visiting You can also test your system by visiting

2022 FMLA Virtual Master Class: Basic Skills for Employee Leave Management

Credit Information

HR Certification Institute HRCI

SHRM Preferred Provider

The use of this official seal confirms that this Activity has met HR Certification Institute’s® (HRCI®)  criteria for recertification credit pre-approval.

HR Certification Institute’s® official seal confirms that Business & Legal Resources (BLR) meets the criteria for pre-approved recertification credit(s) for any of HRCI’s eight credentials, including SPHR® and PHR®. This Program has been approved for 7 (HR) General recertification credit hours toward aPHR™, aPHRi™, PHR®, PHRca®, SPHR®, GPHR®, PHRi™ and SPHRi™ recertification through HR Certification Institute® (HRCI®). For more information about certification or recertification, please visit the HR Certification Institute website at
The credits expire 12/31/22.

Business & Learning Resources (BLR) is recognized by SHRM to offer Professional Development Credits (PDCs) for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP. This program is valid for 7 PDCs for the SHRM-CP or SHRM-SCP. For more information about certification or recertification, please visit the SHRM Certification website  at
The live credits expire 7/22/22.
The on-demand credits expire 12/31/22.

Business & Learning Resources (BLR) is recognized by HCI to offer recertification credits toward a 3-year HCI Certification. This program is valid for 7 HCI Credits. For more information about recertification, please visit the HCI Certification website at