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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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I work civil service. my son is disabled. i have been

Resolved Question:

i work for the civil service. my son is disabled. i have been off work with depression linked to caring for him. I have been off for three months and am back at wrok. my employers say they can give me a first written warning is this correct?
also how much compensation would i be entitled to if i went for ill health dismissal? i have been there 11 years working part time
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Have they said they are looking to dismiss you?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

they have asked if i am looking for dismissal . at this stage i have said no, but am interested in what the figure would be - they say they cant give me that unless i go through the procedure. I know they are going to give me a warning this week which will add to my anxiety ( have had this condition for 15 years )

the online tool will not let me enter my email address to get your answer. it is***@******.***

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
It is possible for an employer to issue an employee with a warning or follow a disciplinary procedure for persistent or long-term absences. However, they should not just adopt a short-sighted approach to this and ignore the reasons for such absences. There are for example instances when the employee’s absence would be due to a disability and in these circumstances the employer is required to make reasonable adjustments first before they consider disciplining them.
In the legal sense of the word, disability can have a broad meaning and there is no single list of medical conditions that qualify. Instead, to establish whether a person is disabled, they need to show that they meet the legal definition of a ‘disability’.
The Equality Act 2010 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.
What amounts to ‘reasonable adjustments’ can have a wide interpretation and often depends on the individual circumstances. Below are some examples:
• making adjustments to work premises;
• allocating some of the employee’s duties to others;
• transferring the employee to fill an existing suitable vacancy;
• altering the employee’s hours of work;
• allowing the employee to be absent during working hours for rehabilitation, assessment or treatment connected to their disability;
• acquiring or modifying specialist equipment;
• providing supervision or other support.
If someone who is disabled is being treated unfavourably because of their disability or their employer has failed to make reasonable adjustments it would potentially amount to disability discrimination. The first step would be to raise a formal grievance. The next step would be to consider whether a claim for disability discrimination should be made in an employment tribunal (the time limit for claiming is only 3 months from the date of the alleged discriminatory act taking place).
In terms of payment for an ill-health dismissal, the law does not actually allow for any compensation to be paid. Anything that the employer may wish to pay is done entirely at their discretion. That is why it is very difficult to give you a figure as what one employer may see as reasonable may be miles apart from what another would. So this is really a matter of negotiating with them until you agree on a figure that is suitable for both. You can ask for anything but the employer may not pay that so it is about finding middle ground. As a starting point you could ask for your notice period, all holidays and the equivalent of a redundancy payment in your circumstances. You can calculate that payment here:
https://www.gov.uk/calculate-your-redundancy-pay
I trust this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page). If for any reason you are unhappy with my response or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

is there anything in the carers act that would support my case? occupational health have said this act has changed and is thered to ensure i dont incur unnecessary warnings.........but i cant interpret what they meant by this

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
The Care Act 2014 does not prevent warnings from being issued, it deals with how local authorities regard carers and the financial or other assistance they offer. So in the circumstances it would not be of much help to you and your rights are still mainly down to the principles I described above.
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