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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 45341
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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I am off sick from work and getting paid full pay. I have been

Resolved Question:

I am off sick from work and getting paid full pay. I have been attending lectures masters degree during the time I am off sick and my employer now knows. Can they stop my sick pay and discipline me?I am attending lectures during the hours I was due to be working.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Ben Jones :

, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What are the reasons you are off work?

Customer:

I have a bad back

Ben Jones :

sorry my connection dropped

Ben Jones :

does the bad back affect you going to those lectures? How is this different than going to work,do you do a manual job?

Customer:

I am a sales executive and carry tock of chocolate on my car. I deliver this stock to independent shops. My back gets worse when I drive not when I'm sitting

Ben Jones :

How long have you worked there for?

Customer:

I asked my company working so that I could attend lectures, it was refused.

Customer:

18 months

Ben Jones :

You are not prevented from having other activities or doing things whilst on sick leave – you are not expected to be confined to your home period. However, if the employer believes that your activities outside of work may suggest that the reasons sick leave may not be genuine, then you could potentially be investigated and disciplined. So if you were off with a bad back but spotted at the gym, you could get into trouble. Similarly, if the employer believes that you may have taken the time off sick to attend the lectures because you could not have done so otherwise as your earlier request working was refuses, it could again prompt them to investigate this. So the actual fact you are attending the lectures whilst off sick does not in itself mean you have done anything wrong but as you an see there are circumstances when the employer can become suspicious.

Customer:

I was off month and returned to work on a phased return which meant I could still attend lectures. But because of the driving my back pain has started again so I have gone sick again and this time they have stopped my sick pay saying it is discretionary.

Customer:

Can I refuse to go to welfare meetings if they clash with my lectures?

Customer:

The business says I need to be available meetings and phone calls whilst off sick

Ben Jones :

you should be available to discuss the situation with the employer but at times that suit you both. I you are off sick then you do not have to be available at the times when you would be working and the employer cannot specify a time if it does not suit you so you will need to find a mutually agreeable time to meet with them

Customer:

What about refusing to pay sick pay?

Ben Jones :

is it discretionary?

Customer:

Yes

Customer:

I get up to 24 weeks full pay

Customer:

they have stopped it. Others have taken the full 6 months and been paid

Ben Jones :

In situations where an employee has been in receipt of discretionary sick pay and the employer wishes to terminate such payments, it may be advisable to give at least a month's notice to the employee. Alternatively, the employer should consider reducing their pay gradually so that the employee does not simply go from full pay to reduced pay or no pay in a short period of time.

Similarly, if medical evidence shows that the employee may be able to return to work in the near future and they have only just lost their sick pay entitlement, it may be appropriate to continue paying the employee remainder of their absence. If there is no definitive return date, the employee has already received sick pay time and their entitlement has expired, the employer may be justified in terminating discretionary sick pay, subject to giving the employee some notice.

Customer:

I think they are doing it as they know I'm attending lectures. They haven't asked my yet but I think it's coming. Are they allowed to 'snoop' on me?

Ben Jones :

in what way?

Customer:

Follow me to see if I go to lectures

Ben Jones :

there is nothing stopping someone from following another person, it only becomes an issue if the person becomes aware of it and asks to stop but it continues and it becomes an issue, they feel harassed, in which case it can become harassment but if you are not aware of it when it happens then they can't be stopped really

Customer:

ok. Thanks help. I guess I'll wait and see what happens.

Customer:

Might be back on when the invite me in investigation. Hope it doesn't clash with a lecture!

Ben Jones :

welcome to come back to me any time. Just start your query with ' Jones'

Customer:

Cheers ***** ***** kind know I'm in the wrong but thanks answers. I'm rating EXCELLENT!

Ben Jones :

many tanks, all the best

Ben Jones :

*thanks

Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 45341
Experience: Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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