Staff Leave of Absence Training - Agriculture and Natural Resources

Leave Management
Staff Training and Toolkit
Welcome to all new and seasoned staff members. The goal of this training is to orient
you to the world of working in the division of Agriculture and Natural Resources. We
will introduce you to the policies, tools and resources available to you and give you facts
and tips to assist you.
In the Family Medical Leave training you will learn what leave entitlements you have as a
staff member, as well as how to track and communicate leave information with your
Leave Management Training Objectives
To learn the most up to date FML policies
To become more familiar with what entitlements staff members have
To learn the ways a staff member may take leave
To become more familiar with the reasons a staff member may take leave
To understand the staff responsibilities in administering FML
Leave of Absence and FML
Table of Contents
Family Medical Leave Act/Pregnancy Disability Leave/CFRA
Employee Responsibility
Interactive Process
Work Contingency Plans
Reasonable Accommodation
Leave of Absence Effect on Benefits
Catastrophic Leave
Workers Compensation
Frequently Asked Questions
Leave of Absence and FML
Family Medical Leave/Leave of Absence
Family medical leave is the terminology used by University of California
campuses and ANR for medically related leaves which includes the Family
Medical Leave Act as well as the Pregnancy Disability Leave Act and the
California Family Rights Act. A leave of absence occurs when an employee
requests an extended leave of absence for any number of reasons,
personal, medical or pregnancy disability, military.
What is the Difference?
FMLA – Federal entitlement
CFRA - State entitlement
PDL – State & UC entitlement (pregnancy only)
FMLA and CFRA run concurrently
FMLA and PDL run concurrently
CFRA and PDL do not run concurrently
Leave of Absence and FML
Family Medical Leave/Leave of Absence
The Federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is
a law that protects a patient’s medical information from being distributed
to others without the patient’s consent.
To determine whether an ailment rises to the level of a “serious
condition,” we require employees to provide a doctors certification
however, the employee has the right to limit to whom the information is
shared with. As such, if an employee does not wish to share information
with the supervisor or office manager directly, the Staff Personnel Unit will
act in a fully confidentially manner, and will not share details of the
condition or reason for leave.
Leave of Absence and FML
Family Medical Leave Act/Pregnancy Disability Leave/CFRA
FML Eligibility
Employee must have at least 12 months of University service (does not
need to be consecutive months)
Employee has worked 1250 hours in the consecutive 12 months
immediately preceding the leave
Has an illness, injury, impairment or physical/mental condition which is
considered a Serious Health Condition
Most leave time (sick, vacation, etc.) is counted for the 12 month requirement but not for
the 1,250 hour requirement.
A female employee qualifies for Pregnancy Disability Leave if she is simply:
• Employed
• Pregnant
Leave of Absence and FML
Family Medical Leave Act/Pregnancy Disability Leave/CFRA
Amount of Leave Entitlement
An eligible employee is generally entitled to 12 workweeks of FML in a calendar year.
That means no more than 12 workweeks for the staff member requesting leave.
For employees who work part time or alternative work schedules the entitlement is
calculated on a prorated basis.
An employee may be entitled to more than 12 workweeks of FML in certain situations
If covered by PPSM and Supplemental Family Medical Leave is granted.
Where leave is taken for a combination of pregnancy, childbirth and baby bonding.
(FML, CFRA, PDL), approximately 7 months may be taken under certain
circumstances, contact the Staff Personnel Unit for more details.
Military Caregiver leave may be taken for up to 26 workweeks in a single 12 month
Leave of Absence and FML
Family Medical Leave Act/Pregnancy Disability Leave/CFRA
How Can Leave be Taken?
In blocks of time
Intermittently (tracked by the supervisor on a regular basis, on the
intermittent leave tracking form)
By working a reduced schedule
Calculated in: 15 minute increments, hours, days, weeks, months
Prorated based on appointment percentage
For further information on how much time a staff member is allotted for their
specific leave, and on what constitutes a Serious Health Condition, contact the
Staff Personnel Unit at [email protected] and rely on any
notification given from the health care provider.
Leave of Absence and FML
Family Medical Leave Act/Pregnancy Disability Leave/CFRA
Qualifying Reasons for Leave
For the employee’s own serious health condition (SHC).
For the employee’s pregnancy related disability. (Pregnancy Disability Leave)
As parental leave to bond with the employee’s newborn, or foster care child (within
12 months of the child’s birth or placement, as applicable.
To care for employee’s family member (child, spouse, same or opposite sex domestic
partner or parent) who has an SHC.
As military caregiver leave to care for a covered service member with a serious
injury or illness incurred in the line of duty.
As qualifying exigency leave to care for family related issues, including childcare
when a family member has been called to active duty or notified of an impending call
to duty.
Applying for FML/Assisting an Employee in Applying for FML
In order to apply for FML you should discuss with your supervisor the leave, or contact the
SPU at [email protected] inbox with any questions you might have.
Leave of Absence and FML
Employee Responsibilities
Notify the Supervisor of any impending leave – they will contact the Staff
Personnel Unit for the FML paperwork
After the SPU provides the supervisor with the FML packet, fill out any
necessary information and review the packet with the supervisor before
turning in all appropriate documents to the SPU
Contact the UCD campus benefits office for their assistance in continuing your
benefits and to discuss any disability insurance possibilities.
Once you have returned from leave, be sure to give your return to work
certification to the supervisor
The supervisor shall maintain confidentiality at all times. Your medical files
and personnel files should be kept separate.
If you have any questions on what type of information you need to share with
your supervisor on the leave related medical condition, contact the SPU.
Leave of Absence and FML
The Interactive Process
The supervisor is responsible for engaging in the Interactive Process with the
staff member in order to evaluate whether job modifications can be made
which enable the employee to continue to perform the essential functions of
the job when:
An employee is out for a prolonged disability leave
An employee discloses to the supervisor that s/he has a disability impacting
his/her job
An employee provides medical information describing prolonged or permanent
A supervisor may ask questions about the leave related medical condition or engage in
conversation about the duties of the position and what changes can be made in order
to assist the staff person in performing the essential job functions. If you have any
questions about what types of changes/questions a supervisor may make, please
contact the Staff Personnel Unit at [email protected] .
Leave of Absence and FML
Work Contingency Plan
A work contingency plan is necessary when a staff person is going to be on an extended
leave and whose duties will still need to be fulfilled while the employee is out. The plan
will set out what duties will be done by who and what types of work may be temporarily
reassigned while the employee is on an extended absence.
Reasonable Accommodation
"Reasonable Accommodation" is a reasonable change or modification that will enable an
employee to perform the essential functions of the job. When an employee has
prolonged or permanent disabilities that impair the employee's ability to perform
his/her job, an effort must be made by the unit to provide accommodation to enable the
employee to work in a modified capacity or change to a more suitable position.
You may contact [email protected] with any questions or concerns, or
you may contact Disability Management Services directly (UC Davis campus) for further
details by calling (530) 752-1774.
Leave of Absence and FML
Leave of Absence Effect on Benefits
ANR’s benefits run through the UC Davis campus Benefits office; they can be
contacted by calling (530) 752-1774. An employee’s leave may have a significant
impact on their benefits, therefore an employee shall contact the Benefits Office
before (a) starting a leave, (b) changing to leave without pay, and (c) returning from
In many circumstances, an employee may be eligible for some type of benefit to assist
them during the medical leave. The types of benefits (not an exhaustive list) available
Catastrophic Leave – Vacation time donated to support employee on leave
University Paid Disability – Disability benefit accrued through the University
Supplemental Disability – Disability benefit accrued by paying into the system
Leave of Absence and FML
Catastrophic Leave
This program allows an employee to donate accrued vacation to support a colleague
who has exhausted his or her paid leave due to a catastrophic illness.
Employee holds a career appointment
Passed probation
Requests the catastrophic leave during or before the leave, not after
Recipient must exhaust all paid leave
Is in a collective bargaining unit that participates in the program or is a nonrepresented employee
Note: A qualifying medical condition for Catastrophic leave is anything a doctor
determines to be a serious health condition for the staff person or a family member they
are responsible to care for. In order to apply for Catastrophic Leave send your request to
your supervisor, and they will contact the Staff Personnel Unit at
[email protected] for further information.
Leave of Absence and FML
University Paid Disability
Is a member of a Defined Benefit Retirement Plan to which the University
contributes (such as UCRP, PERS, etc.)
Is appointed in a position at least 50% time for 12 months or more, and
Maintains an average regular paid time equal to 20 hours or more per week.
Note: University Paid Disability is processed through the UC Davis campus benefits office.
They can be reached at (530) 752-1774
Supplemental Disability
You are a member of a Defined Benefit Retirement Plan to which the University
contributes (such as UCRP, PERS, etc.), and
You maintain average regular paid time equal to 17.5 hours or more per week.
Have enrolled and pay the monthly premium for supplemental disability benefits
Note: Supplemental Disability is processed through the UC Davis campus benefits office. They
can be reached at (530) 752-1774
Leave of Absence and FML
Workers Compensation
While Workers Compensation is not the same as Family Medical Leave and is considered
a separate entitlement, a supervisor may elect to “provisionally designate” a Workers
Compensation (WC) case as Family Medical Leave, pending approval from our third
party vendor on the Workers Compensation case.
Employees often use sick leave, or vacation when they are out on Workers Compensation
leave before their case has been approved. Situations can sometimes arise when a case
is denied, and instead of Workers Compensation, it turns into a Family Medical Leave
case. In these circumstances, it is helpful to have notified the employee of their FML
entitlement and have provisionally designated the leave.
If you have a Workers Compensation case, contact the Staff Personnel Unit for further
Leave of Absence and FML
Frequently Asked Questions
Why bother with FML?
FML is a considerable benefit to the employee and the unit. It protects the employee from
having absences counted against them as well as protects their position during the time of the
medically protected leave.
What is considered a Serious Health Condition?
An Illness, injury, impairment or physical/mental condition that involves:
• A condition that requires inpatient care
• A condition that requires continuing treatment by a healthcare provider
• A condition that causes incapacitation
These can be:
• A Chronic Serious Health Condition
• A Permanent Health Condition
• A Multiple Treatment Condition
• An Acute Condition
Leave of Absence and FML
Frequently Asked Questions
What happens when an employee combines FML with PDL and CFRA?
They are entitled to a possible combined total of 7 (seven) months of leave because FML
runs concurrently with PDL for a total of 4 months of possible leave and 12 weeks of
CFRA which does not run concurrently with PDL.
Is an employee required to take sick leave before their vacation while on an FML
designated leave?
In some circumstances, yes. This depends on their union contract and if you have
specific questions on whether you need to take sick leave first, your supervisor can work
with the Staff Personnel Unit to determine.
Does PDL cover morning sickness?
PDL covers many pregnancy related symptoms including severe morning sickness. It
also covers prenatal appointments and a period of incapacitation before and after the
childbirth. If there are any questions, work with a doctor, your supervisor or contact the
Staff Personnel Unit.
Leave of Absence and FML
Frequently Asked Questions
I have taken several days off this week for the flu, is this considered FML?
Not usually, unless complications present itself, the common flu, the common cold, and
other routine issues such as dental work and earaches do not in and of itself constitute
an FML related leave. This would be taken as normal sick leave unless further
information is received that the situation has worsened or complications have arisen.
I received a note from a Nurse Practitioner, is this ok?
Yes, there are many individuals who are considered Health Care Providers, including
physicians, surgeons, nurse midwifes, nurse practitioners, clinical social workers and
others who are licensed to practice in the state of California, the US or any other country.
My employee is taking 12 weeks at the end of the year, does that mean the FML
entitlements will start over in January?
Yes possibly. Even though the employee is taking their full leave entitlement, eligibility
renews every calendar year, meaning they may be able to take another 12 weeks at the
beginning of the next year. This is however only if the employee can re-qualify based on
their hours worked in the year prior to the leave.
Leave of Absence and FML
Frequently Asked Questions
I have a 50% time employee, are they eligible?
The employee will need to qualify based on their hours worked, and the duration of their
employment but a reduced schedule at 50% will not usually allow them to qualify. Their
hours of eligibility is prorated based on their appointment percentage. This person
would be entitled to 50% of the usual 12 week benefit.
My employee is on Intermittent Leave but it has been six months, can I have them
recertify the leave?
No, the leave is based on the first doctors certification and as long as the certification
states that the end date has not passed, there is no need, or requirement to recertify. The
recertification will need to be done when nearing or at the end date of the previous
doctors certification.
What if an I want to come back to work, but do not have a release to work
An employee who is put out on leave must be given a release from a doctor in order to
return. If you are having trouble getting a release, please contact the SPU.
Leave of Absence and FML
Frequently Asked Questions
My supervisor has told me I am not eligible for FML, what can I do?
Family Medical leave eligibility is determined in the Staff Personnel Unit based on a
certification from a health care practitioner. We look at information such as service,
hours worked in the prior year and union in order to determine eligibility. If a
supervisor has stated that you are not eligible, it may be one of these things, however,
please feel free to contact the Staff Personnel Unit to discuss.
I do not want to share any medical information with my supervisor, what
can I do?
You do not need to share this information with a supervisor, but must share it with
someone in order to go out on an approved leave. The Staff Personnel Unit can assist
you by acting in a strictly confidential manner, or we can work with a third party
facilitator in Disability Management who can work with you directly. Feel free to contact
us to ask questions, even if you do not have details you would like to share.
Leave of Absence and FML
Frequently Asked Questions
What if I am NOT eligible for FML?
FML is not the only way an employee can take leave, there are still other entitlements
that they may be eligible for, so discuss with your supervisor, or contact the Staff
Personnel Unit if this situation arises. The employee could consider catastrophic leave,
university or supplemental disability or workers compensation if it is a work related
These other types of leaves are ran through the UC Davis campus, however the Staff
Personnel Unit should be your first point of contact in determining next steps when a
leave occurs.
My supervisor wants to document performance issues for times I was covered
under FML, what can I do?
Contact the Staff Personnel Unit as soon as possible, we will work with you to separate
out the medical leave with the performance issues and can assist you in determining
next steps. We can assist with reasonable accommodation requests/needs, developing
an appropriate performance evaluation, creating a usable work plan, and many other
issues you may be experiencing during this time.
Leave of Absence and FML
Frequently Asked Questions
What if I do not want to use FML?
An employee cannot opt out of using their FML entitlement if they are eligible. Many
employees feel overwhelmed by the FML paperwork, however, in order to take any kind
of long term medical leave a doctors note is required, and so is a return to work
certification which is the basis for all FML paperwork. If you are having trouble filling
out the paperwork or have other concerns, please feel free to contact the SPU.
I still have questions, what should I do?
Always feel free to contact the Staff Personnel Unit at [email protected]
We are here to assist with any usual or unusual problems they may occur. If you find you
need immediate assistance, please call: 530-752-4540.
Leave of Absence and FML
Non Discrimination Policy
The University of California, in accordance with applicable Federal and State law and University
policy, does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity,
pregnancy (including childbirth and related medical conditions), physical or mental disability, age,
medical condition (cancer-related or genetic characteristics), ancestry, marital status, citizenship,
sexual orientation, or service in the uniformed services (includes membership, application for
membership, performance of service, application for service, or obligation for service in the
uniformed services). The University also prohibits sexual harassment. This nondiscrimination policy
covers admission, access, and treatment in University programs and activities.
• ANR Staff Personnel Unit
[email protected]
• UC Davis Benefits Office
(530) 752-1774 or
• Disability Management Services
(530) 752-6019
Leave of Absence and FML
UC Davis FMLA Toolkit
FML Guide:
FML Checklist
The Interactive Process:
Leave Tracking for Exempt and Non-Exempt Employees
Training by Bethanie Brown, 2012, [email protected]

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