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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
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Can an employer dismiss an employee on the grounds that they

Customer Question

Can an employer dismiss an employee on the grounds that they have epilepsy and a potential albeit unlikely risk exists that the employee would have a seizure whilst with a service user?
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 7 months ago.

Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 7 months ago.

How long has the employee worked there for?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
1 week
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 7 months ago.

Did the employer know the employee's health condition prior to them starting?

Customer: replied 7 months ago.
they did
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 7 months ago.

OK, thank you for your response. I will review the relevant information and laws and will get back to you at the earliest opportunity. There is no need to wait here as you will receive an email when I have responded. Also, please do not responded to this message as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you.

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 7 months ago.

Many thanks for your patience. As epilepsy is likely to amount to a disability under the Equality Act 2010, the employer should not just go ahead and dismiss without considering the wider picture and taking into consideration the condition and what can be done about it. Just because someone may have a seizure with a service user does not mean that they should be dismissed – you have to consider the potential implications of that, such as how vulnerable the service users are, where they may be if a seizure potentially occurs, what impact that may have on them (i.e. would they be a vulnerable person left alone in an unfamiliar place) and so on.

Before the employer considers dismissal they also have a duty to make reasonable adjustments to help the employee deal with this issue and that is a strict legal duty on them. Only if there is a clear risk of harm or danger and no reasonable adjustments have been possible should a dismissal be contemplated on grounds of capability, arguing that they are not capable of performing their job.

Please take a second to leave a positive rating for the service so far by selecting 3, 4 or 5 stars. I can continue answering follow up questions and in particular can also discuss examples of reasonable adjustments and the procedure for potential dismissal. Don’t worry, there is no extra cost and leaving a rating will not close the question and we can still continue this discussion. Thank you

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 7 months ago.

Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question and if you need me to discuss the next steps in more detail? In the meantime please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts from the top of the page. The question will not close and I can continue with my advice as discussed. Thank you

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 7 months ago.

Hello, do you need any further assistance or are you happy with the above response? Look forward to hearing from you.

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