There are various issues that commonly arise with Employment Law Sickness and employers need to appreciate the differences between them, to safeguard the response towards sick employees. The relationship between a business and its employees is vital to the ongoing success of the company and needs to be managed carefully. In order to increase the output generated by its workforce an employer needs to build mutually respectful relationships, so that in the event of any issues arising they have good, open communication that enables them to resolve any conflicts.
The classic “pulling a sickie” is a common problem that many workplaces struggle with. These “sickies” often occur on a Monday or Friday and can lead to resentment among other workers, who may be forced to cover their colleagues’ absences on a regular basis. Acting swiftly is the key to resolving this problem, as it important not to let a precedent develop. Our specialist employment team are well versed in dealing with the legal aspect of this type of absence, can provide sound advice to help you tackle this problem before it causes you difficulties.
Employees who have an underlying medical condition that may force them to take frequent or extended breaks from work, also require delicate handling with regard to Employment Law Sickness. Again, establishing open communication is extremely important, as those employees who feel supported in their return to work after a period of sickness, will find the transition back into work easier. Phased returns can be one option to facilitate a supported return. Back to work interviews or meeting can also help promote constructive dialogue and may help deter those employees tempted to ‘pull a sickie’.
A challenging area of employment law sickness relates to those employees who may have a disability as defined by The Equality Act of 2010. These situations can be extremely sensitive and require delicate handling, as if mishandled employers may find themselves having to defend claims for disability discrimination.
Employers need to make sure that they are clear in their boundaries with their employees, so that potentially difficult situations are not allowed to develop. Employees who are absent long term due to sickness may require additional input form an Occupational Health expert.