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Madeleine Loewenberg

Lawyer, Workplace Investigator, and Mediator


Dr. Dwayne Van Eerd

Institute of Work & Health

Brad N. Cocke

Cooperwilliams Truman & Ito LLP

Niiti Simmonds

Union Counsel

Income protection for employees who are unable to work due to illness or disability is a crucial issue in collective bargaining. Unions seek to safeguard employees’ income security from unexpected interruptions caused by sickness, while employers are concerned to enhance the efficiency and contain the costs of such income replacement programs. Difficult questions of contract interpretation arise about eligibility and entitlement, particularly where a third-party insurer or administrative service provider is involved. In this webinar, a panel of experts will provide guidance on a number of key issues, taking into consideration recent decisions of arbitrators and the courts.

  • What is the relationship between negotiated entitlements under a collective agreement and statutory entitlements under employment standards legislation, e.g. paid sick leave or emergency leave days? Can employees’ sick leave entitlements under a collective agreement be offset against comparable entitlements under legislation?
  • When an employee is on an extended medical leave of absence, such as workers’ compensation or long-term disability, is the employer permitted to pro-rate benefits under collective agreements that are based on service, i.e. vacation or holiday pay? Does the pro-rating of benefits in such circumstances constitute prohibited discrimination?
  • In what circumstances will the employer be obligated to pay negotiated sickness or disability benefits where a third-party insurance company or administrative services provider has denied the claim?
  • To what extent can employees be required to provide personal medical information when applying, for sick leave, short-term, or long-term disability benefits? When is a request for additional, more detailed information justified? What medical information can properly be required in support of a request for a workplace accommodation?
  • When will eligibility requirements, e.g. qualifying days, for sickness or disability benefits be held to discriminate on the basis of disability or other prohibited grounds?
  • Can an employee who is found to be “totally disabled” from performing work in any occupation, in accordance with an insured plan, be dismissed for non-culpable absenteeism? When will a subsisting entitlement to benefits preclude dismissal for non-culpable absenteeism?


CPD Alberta
This program has been approved for Continuing Professional Development 1.5 hours under Category A of the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Log of the Human Resource Professionals Association (HRPA).
CPD BC and Yukon
This program has been approved by CPHR BC & Yukon for 1.5 Continuing Professional Development hours.
CPD Alberta
This program has been approved by CPHR Alberta for 1.5 Continuing Professional Development hours.


  • This program has been approved by the Law Society of British Columbia for 1.5 Continuing Professional Development hours.
  • Members of the Law Society of Ontario may consider counting this program for 1.5 Substantive hours; 0 Professionalism hours.
  • Members of the Nova Scotia Barristers’ Society may count this program for 1.5 Continuing Professional Development hours.
  • Members of the Law Society of New Brunswick may consider this program for 1.5 Continuing Professional Development hours.

Additional Information


Valuable, up-to-date materials and case summaries will be available for downloading from our website. Each webinar is accompanied by a PDF of concise summaries of the cases discussed.

Registration Fee – Single Attendee

Live webinar, video, and MP3 bundle – $440
Live webinar – $275
Video and MP3 – $275
(Registrations must be paid in advance of the webinar)
Please contact us by email, or by phone at (416) 977-6618, for discount pricing for additional participants and group orders.

Registration Information

The video recording, MP3 file, and materials are available for download and viewing one business day after the live webinar. After purchasing, you will receive an e-mail with instructions on how to access and download the video recording, MP3 file, and materials. For purchases for upcoming webinars, once the video recording and MP3 file and materials are available, registrants will receive an update e-mail informing them that the links are now ready.

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