Long Term Sickness Absence

legal updates

If a dismissal is inevitable then it is important to follow the correct procedure when dealing with the actual dismissal and use the minimum 3-stage process.

Read our disclaimer keyboard_arrow_down

This website content is intended as a general guide to law as it applies to the motor trade. Lawgistics has taken every effort to ensure that the contents are as accurate and up to date as at the date of first publication.

The laws and opinions expressed within this website may be varied as the law develops. As such we cannot accept liability for or the consequence of, any change of law, or official guidelines since publication or any misuse of the information provided.

The opinions in this website are based upon the experience of the authors and it must be recognised that only the courts and recognised tribunals can interpret the law with authority.

Examples given within the website are based on the experience of the authors and centre upon issues that commonly give rise to disputes. Each situation in practice will be different and may comprise several points commented upon.

If you have any doubt about the correct legal position you should seek further legal advice from Lawgistics or a suitably qualified solicitor. We cannot accept liability for your failure to take professional advice where it should reasonably be sought by a prudent person.

All characters are fictitious and should not be taken as referring to any person living or dead.

Use of this website shall be considered acceptance of the terms of the disclaimer presented above.

Sickness absence, whether too frequent short or long term can present a lot of difficulties for employers, particularly small businesses. 

The absence of an employee places a higher proportion of strain on other employees when there are not so many to distribute the extra work around. 

With long term sickness there is potential for the problems to amount to a disability as defined by the Disability Discrimination act.  Any action taken against such a person could be challenged as discriminatory giving the employee a potential case at an Employment Tribunal.  It is important for fairness that with a long term sickness situation evidence is sought from a medical professional, whether the person treating the employee or otherwise, as to the likely outcome in terms of recovery time and whether they consider the person is considered disabled, by definition.  It is necessary to gain written permission from the employee to do this and give them the opportunity to see the report before the employer.  We have standard template letters for clients for this purpose.   If the person is disabled then consideration has to be given to making reasonable adjustments to get back to work.  It is sensible to consult with the employee.  Likewise it is not unreasonable to request visits to the employee to assess the prospect for return to work and discuss any assistance that can be given.  Such assistance may include a change of job structure or role.

In the case of Lynock v Cereal Packaging Ltd 1988 a number of aspects which an employer should take account of

  • consultation
  • appropriate warnings of risk to job is there is not a return to work
  • personal assessment of the situation
  • nature of the illness
  • likelihood of recurrence or other illness
  • length of absence(s)
  • impact on the rest of the workforce
  • the need to have the work done

Finally, if a dismissal is inevitable then it is important to follow the correct procedure when dealing with the actual dismissal and use the minimum 3-stage process.  See the separate article in this bulletin.

HR ManagerSo simple even a child could use it

HR Manager is designed to assist employers manage their legal obligations in relation to Employment Law, Human Resources, Health & Safety and Data Protection. Fully utilising HR Manager will demonstrate best practice, assist in the meeting of legal obligations and show due diligence.

Dennis ChapmanIn remembrance of Dennis Chapman 1951 -2015Read More by this author

Related Legal Updates

Long-term Sickness Absence

Where an employee has been absent from work, due to their incapacity to attend, the aim is always to, where reasonably possible, assist in their return to and continuance of work.

From sick notes to fit notes

From July 2022, the type of medical practitioners who can issue sick notes will be widened.

Claims of harassment related to age and sex

Mr King was found to have crossed the line by making reference to Mr Finn’s appearance which had created an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating, and/or offensive environment.

ACAS conciliation

Employers can also contact ACAS directly for assistance in mediation with a former employee.

Pandemic impact on annual leave entitlement

The change in March 2020 allowed for four weeks of annual leave to be carried over. So, as a reminder, any carried over leave must be used in 2022!

Right to work – adjusted checks extended to 30 September 2022

Job applicants and existing employees can send scanned documents or a photo of documents for checks using email or a mobile app, rather than sending originals.

“Your hours cut or you’re fired!” ultimatum resulted in an unfair dismissal finding

Employment contract variation is a matter which should be approached with care and any opposition should not be written off without consideration.

Get in touch

Complete the form to get in touch or via our details below:

01480 455500

Vinpenta House
High Causeway

By submitting this quote you agree to our Terms & Conditions and Privacy & Cookies Policy.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.