One of the biggest headaches in employing people is getting HR policies right. If you fail to have basic documentation in place, even in very small companies, it can cause untold hassles, headaches and much worse. So why take the risk?
Save time and money by using our ready made free policy template in your business. This policy has been written by experienced HR professionals and is updated regularly to take into account changes in UK employment legislation. It’s as simple as downloading this document and letting your employees know about it.
Long-term sickness absence policy
The organisation aims to encourage all its employees to maximise their attendance at work. It is recognised, however, that a certain level of sickness absence is inevitable. It is the organisation’s policy to support employees who are genuinely sick and unable to come to work.
Long-term absence is regarded as continuous absence due to illness or injury of one month or more or, where there is no foreseeable return to work. Careful recording and monitoring by managers is essential to enable early proactive interventions.
As part of this policy, employees will (subject to a limited number of exceptions) continue to be paid full or part salary for defined periods of time while absent, provided that they comply with the organisation’s rules on notification and the provision of ongoing medical evidence.
[The organisation retains the services of an occupational doctor. Employees may be requested by their manager to consent to be examined by the occupational doctor (at the organisation’s expense) and to agree to allow the doctor to provide a medical report to the organisation. The terms of all employees’ contracts are that they must give such consent when reasonably asked to do so by the organisation.]
Employees may be requested by their manager to consent to be examined by a doctor and to agree to allow the doctor to provide a medical report to the organisation. The terms of all employees’ contracts are that they must give such consent when reasonably asked to do so by the organisation.
Naturally, the Organisation will be sympathetic when the employee is ill or injured but the employee should appreciate that if they are continually off work through ill-health or injured for an extended period, it will not be possible for the situation to continue indefinitely, and the employee’s employment may be formally reviewed which could result in it being terminated.
The organisation will not consider terminating the employment of an employee who is absent from work due to genuine sickness or injury during the first [one month/three months/six months/year/two years] of absence. Thereafter, the position will be reviewed periodically and ultimately it may become necessary from a business perspective to consider termination of employment. In these circumstances, the organisation will:
● review the employee’s absence record to assess whether or not it is sufficient to justify dismissal;
● consult the employee;
● obtain up-to-date medical advice;
● advise the employee in writing as soon as it is established that termination of employment has become a possibility;
● meet with the employee to discuss the options and consider the employee’s views on continuing employment;
● review if there are any other jobs that the employee could do prior to taking any decision on whether or not to dismiss;
● allow a right of appeal against any decision to dismiss the employee on grounds of long-term ill health; and
● arrange a further meeting with the employee to determine any appeal;
● following this meeting, inform the employee of its final decision; and
● act reasonably towards the employee at all times.
Where a return to work does prove possible, the Organisation may require that the employee’s fitness to return is confirmed by a medical practitioner of the Organisation’s choice.
Disclaimer: The recommendations should only be used as guidelines. Please only select the portions that apply to your company. Neither the author nor joinair.com will assume legal liability for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information provided in whole or in part within this article.
This template is ready to be tailored to your company’s needs and should be considered a starting point for setting up your employment policies. Sections in [brackets] should be edited appropriately.