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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 44874
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I was off work with work related stress for 8 months due to

Customer Question

I was off work with work related stress for 8 months due to bullying victimisation harassment e.tc. During this period I ended up at hospital and was diagnosed with a personality disorder. I returned to work on medication and have been on ramp up for 15 months and I am now up to 20 -25 hours. My time off was on full pay and my ramp up is full pay, heading back towards 40 hours

The works doctor keeps telling me if I don't come back full time I will get my pay dropped can they do this ? Or am I classed as disabled under the DDA. I have been off medication for For 2 months and don't want to go back to work in case this happens again as a similar event happened 8 years a go. I have been told I can take a career break with no pay, but I'm not even sure this will help as I know I'll have to go back.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is Ben and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

Ben Jones :

How long have you worked there for?

JACUSTOMER-5gx7agjs- : 23 years
Ben Jones :

OK, thank you, please leave this with me - I will look into this for you, get my response ready and get back to you on here. No need to wait around and you will get an email when I have responded, thank you

Ben Jones :

Many thanks for your patience. Whether you are classed as disabled will depend on whether you meet the criteria for disability which is laid out in legislation. It is not the DDA any more though, it is now the Equality Act that deals with that and it defines a disability as a “physical or mental impairment that has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on a person’s ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities”.

I will break this definition down:

  • Physical or mental impairment – this can include nearly any medical condition;
  • Substantial effect – the effect must be more than minor or trivial;
  • Long-term - the effect of the impairment must either have lasted or be likely to last for at least 12 months;
  • Normal day-to-day activities – these could include anything considered ‘normal’ in a person's normal daily routine (e.g. walking, driving, speaking, eating, washing, etc.)

If a person satisfies the above criteria, they will be classified as being disabled and will have automatic protection against discrimination, which means that they must not be treated unfavourably because of their disability. In addition, their employer would have a duty to make reasonable adjustments if they are likely to be placed at a substantial disadvantage when compared to non-disabled employees.

They are already making reasonable adjustments by allowing you a phased return to work to try and help you with adjusting back to work and whilst during that time they can help you by paying you full pay, if it eventually transpires that you cannot return full time and will have to continue working part time on a permanent basis, I am afraid you cannot expect to continue receiving full pay for working part time. This wi8ll not amount to discrimination because you are not being treated detrimentally due to your disability – you are after all working part time hours, even if required due to your condition, but if that becomes a permanent thing then the employer can then start paying you pro-rata for the work you actually do. For a limited period of time they can help you and pay you full time even if you do part time work, such as if you are being phased back into work, but once it becomes evident that it is no longer a rehabilitation attempt and that this is now a permanent feature, then they can adjust your pay to reflect the hours you actually work.

Ben Jones :

Hope this clarifies your position?

Ben Jones :

Hello, I see you have accessed and read my answer to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this? I just need to know whether to close the question or not? Thanks

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello David, could you please let me know if I have answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this – this is needed so I can either keep the question open or close it if no further advice is required? Thank you

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