Sickness absence is incredibly costly for employers, both in terms of sick pay due to employees and the cost of replacement staff, especially in cases of long term sickness absence. Businesses are often severely disrupted by sickness absence. Given these serious issues facing employers, the management of both long and short term absence is of fundamental importance to the running of a successful business.
We act for organisations in London and throughout the UK. We have extensive experience in advising business clients regarding sickness absence, both short and long term. Our top-ranked employment solicitors are here to guide you through the minefield of sickness absence and performance management.
Expertise from Experienced London Sickness Absence and Performance Management Solicitors
In cases of persistent short term absence, an employer may believe that illness is not genuine, and that the employee is abusing sick pay entitlement. Employers should be mindful of the possibility that there may be an underlying medical condition causing the absence. We enable and encourage employers to tackle these issues at an early stage.
Cases of long term absence can be particularly damaging for your business. Employers are unable to permanently replace or dismiss an employee absent on long term sick leave without following a comprehensive ill-health and capability management process.
If the employer fails to follow such a process, an expensive unfair dismissal or disability discrimination claim is likely to result. Often, employers do not want to tackle long term sickness absence because of the risk of a claim resulting. It is in those cases where the situation may spiral out of control, with an employee’s absence lasting several months or even years. This in itself throws up a minefield of issues, particularly if the employee has the right to permanent health insurance.
We work closely with employers and their HR teams, providing advice and guidance on the process to be followed. We advise on gaining appropriate medical advice on the employee’s condition, perhaps by involving occupational health, and on the implementation of any reasonable adjustments. We can assist your business to deal with a sickness absence that is not genuine, or where it is unlikely that the employee will return to work, including ill-health management procedures and dismissals.
We provide a tailored sickness absence and performance management service, including ongoing day-to-day support. We also provide our clients with effectively drafted Capability and Sickness Absence policies. These are designed to deal with such issues, and set out the framework of other procedures.
We are also happy to review existing policies, to ensure that they meet your needs. When working with us, you can expect 24/7 access and the support of a team of committed solicitors.