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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50138
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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Hi there I am off sick about 6 months, I will be back to

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Hi there
I am off sick about 6 months, I will be back to work soon. Unfortunately I am not allowed to do same job because of my illness. My doctor said that my company will need to find for me easier job. No more 12hrs work and it can't be pysicial so it looks like my employer will need to find for my new position. My question is how much time they have to find me a new position? What happend if they won't find any suitable job for me? will I get paid for it? Is it possible they will find a new position for me but for less money? What can I do about it to change it?
Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How long have you worked there for and what is the nature of your sickness?

Please note I am just going offline for a bit but will return to answer your query later today, thanks


I have been working for them 3 years. I have sle (systematick lupus erythematosus) which is a type of lupus that can affect any body tissue and organ.

Ben Jones :

Many thanks for your patience. When an employee is off sick and are no longer able to continue doing their normal job, the employer would have a duty to try and assist them in returning to work, either by making changes to their existing job or by finding them something else to do that is suitable.

There is no specified time limit as to how long this process could take and it would only be expected that a reasonable effort is made by the employer. They won’t be expected to continue looking for an indefinite period of time or to make drastic changes to their business to trey and accommodate you and in fact eventually they could even consider dismissal if nothing can be done about this and you are unable to return to work in your old or a suitable position.

Don’t get immediately concerned about a potential dismissal because for that to happen the employer needs to show they had reasonable grounds to believe that the employee was incapable of performing their job and that nothing further could be done to assist them. In the end they need to show that dismissal was a reasonable decision to take. The courts have held that an important consideration is whether any reasonable employer would have waited longer in the circumstances before dismissing the employee.

When looking at the reasonableness of such a decision, the tribunal will usually look at the following elements:

  • What was the nature of the illness

  • Was the employee consulted over their position and did the employer try to ascertain the true medical position

  • What was the likelihood of the employee returning to work or the illness reoccurring in the future

  • The effect a prolonged absence would have on the business and the workforce

  • The availability of other suitable employment that the employee could do instead

As you are likely to be classified as being disabled in law you will also have automatic protection against discrimination, which means that you must not be treated unfavourably because of your disability. In addition, your employer would have a duty to make reasonable adjustments if you are likely to be placed at a substantial disadvantage when compared to non-disabled employees.

If no suitable vacancy can be found then you will only continue to be paid your sick pay allowance, the employer is not expected to pay you your normal salary for the time you are off if you are not entitled to it under your sick pay entitlement.

If they do find a different position then they cannot reduce your pay unless your contract allowed it or you agreed to it.

Hope this clarifies your position? If you could please let me know that would be great, thank you

Ben Jones :

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? Thanks




Thank you for your answer. It helped me to understand more. I hope my company will be supportive and I won't have any problems.

Ben Jones :

I hope so too - all the best

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