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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50156
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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I was suspended from work on 5th March pending investigations

Customer Question

I was suspended from work on 5th March pending investigations into a customer complaint. Marched from the building minus laptop,phoen and entry pass I requested my SAR report(to assist my case) which I have now received. On 13th March, i fell from a ladder at home breaking my wrist and fracturing my spine ending up in hospital. Discharged from Hospital and signed off from work whilst healing process takes place. As soon as I was discharged my Employer RBS have been trying to arrange the disciplinary hearing before my SAR report arrived and whilst signed off. My doctor has explained in my sick note that I should not attend any meetings apart from with Doctors until I am fully recovered. He has also upped my medication for my depression. (signed off for 9 months in 2012 with breakdown) I am in pain and on constant pain killers. They have said they will arrange a taxi to get me to the meeting but I am into much pain to travel and have expressed my concern that this meeting should be left until I am fit for work. Now they have arranged for occupation health to assess me. OH Assist in Sheffield have not requested Doctors reports from my GP or the Neurosurgeons I am under at the Hospital.
My concerns are they will be abl;e to say I am fit to attend the meeting just because I have attended the meeting with OH. Please advise.
The SAR report does not show a customer complaint but there is an email saying that 2 other managers who arrived late at the customers overheard me lie to a customer and have told my line manager this. That is why I am under the charge of Gross Misconduct, my word against there's and the meeting seems to be just to sack me. Being sacked and not able to work because of my fracture/depression. Please can you advise me with regards XXXXX XXXXX with OH and my employer. I know that they will get rid of me but at least I need to have ability to be able to seek employment elsewhere.
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is Ben and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How long have you worked there please?

JACUSTOMER-ws4v5ic7- :

13 years

Ben Jones :

Hi, it is not uncommon for employees to try and postpone disciplinary hearings, whether because they are signed off sick or because they feel they were not given enough notice and so on.

Whilst there is no specific law that details this, in circumstances where the employee is unable to attend due to unforeseeable circumstances beyond their control, the employer should arrange another meeting.

If an employee fails to attend the first meeting arranged, it will usually be good practice for the employer to re-arrange the meeting to an alternative date in order to give the employee a further chance to attend.

If the employee is still absent after a period of time the employer may, subject to the employee's consent, obtain medical advice as to whether the employee is fit to attend a disciplinary hearing and, if not, when they are likely to be. This may be obtained from either the employee's own GP or an independent doctor such as occupational health.

So the initial meeting now should be postponed until they try and work out whether you are fit to attend and depending on the outcome of that assessment – they should consider arranging a new meeting or delaying it until such a time when you are actually fit to attend. Also attending the health assessment on its own should not result in them making a decision you are fit to attend – it is one thing turning up to an assessment, another is facing a formal disciplinary where your job is on the line and you are expected to answer numerous questions and formally defend yourself.

Ben Jones :

Hello, I see you have accessed and read my answer to your query. 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? I just need to know whether to close the question or not? Thanks

Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.
Hello Rob, could you please let me know if I have answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this – this is needed so I can either keep the question open or close it if no further advice is required? Thank you