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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50209
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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I deteriorated quite considerably during stoppage of attendance of my medical clinic appointment for a number of weeks by my employer. I am struggling to recover now but continuing pressure from my emplyer to put me through "must improve" period of assessment without addressing the reasonable adjustment to help me has led to considerable distress and unbearable level of stress. I have to see my GP, he instisted on signing me off with a sick note for 2 weeks and would review this next week. I am so worried this will further count against me so I refused the initial 4 weeks he wanted me off sick. I see my GP next week and I am worried he might tell me am not fit for work still. I am not sleeping well due to worry about the way the workplace is treating me. A vicious circle that I need to address. I really need to getmy boss to agree to address the reasonable adjustment that will make working comfortable.
1) I want to ask for reasonable adjustment around my working time and have these implimented before putting me on formal period of "must improve". Issue he has raised relates to an incident of not meeting one deadline in the past due to medical emergency coupled with IT problem on the day. All my good work did not seem to count. Is it reasonable to ask formally as he has verbaly told me he would not consider this?
2) to be effective, I need to work from home on the 2 days that I attend clinic. This will save me alot of travelling time between work and clinic which takes 1hr 15min each way when my home is just 20min away and better set up for working as I have adequate adjustments; and will reduce stress due to traffic. Due to the nature of the treatment - orthopeadic physiotherapy, I am a bit tired after treatment and need about 30min to regroup and settle. I don't get this and I sam running and rushing to get to work and work late to make up the clinic time and travle time back to work. Is it reasonable to ask for working at home on those days 2days formally? I know colleagues who have not got my problem who regularly work from home 2 or 3 days a week.
3) I do not understand why my boss is not keen to attach my medical report that recommends reasonable adjustment be made to the system that informs HR. I asked what he would do with the report he said, he'd drawn line under it as he only wants to know if i do indeed attend the regilar clinic. He seems to potrsy me as malingering or lying. How do I deal with this? Do I have to formally request that the report should me made available to HR and the organisation to inform me how they will address the issue of reasonable adjustment.?
4) do you think I need to get an employemet lawyer to write to my organisation about this?
Hello, my name is***** am a solicitor on this site and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Has the employer actually tried to make any reasonable adjustments to date?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

No, nothing and very reluctant to do so. They just want to put me through what seems to me like disclinary procedure without calling it so. They have changed the languate to "poor performance management" all reasond was based again on attendacnce during the time I go to clinic and the incident of missing one deadline in March during a medical emergency. They have refused to see the linkage to lack of reasonable adjustments as recommended by their own Occupational physician. I was just told to forget it.

Hi there
To answer your specific queries:
1) Yes you should definitely ask formally for these adjustments to be introduced. The duty to make reasonable adjustments is a very strict one on the employer and they have to make whatever adjustments are deemed reasonable and will only have very limited circumstances in which they can refuse. They cannot just refuse to even consider them without having thought about it carefully and be able to justify why they cannot implement them.
2) Yes it is indeed reasonable to ask this especially if there are others who work from home without any issues. The fact that you have a disability and this will help you should make the employer consider this seriously and as mentioned only a very strong reason could be used to refuse it. So if that is what will help and it has been applied successfully to others, you may certainly ask for it.
3) In the first instance a grievance should be pursued if direct communication with the manager does not help. After that you could even consider contacting HR directly and raising your concerns with them or advising them of the existence of the report and offering to send it directly if needed. They should be kept in the loop if they can make decision which would affect you and which are linked to your disability.
4) It is not necessary, at least not at this stage. An lawyer does not have any extra powers at this stage that they could use, the only thing is they may use some more technical language or mention things, but that is not a legal requirement and you could just do the same job if needed. So just pursue the matter internally by yourself (or union assistance if you have any) and only consider engaging a lawyer if you are going to make a formal tribunal claim.
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
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