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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 50161
Experience:  Qualified Solicitor
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I am currently on a jobshare contract working 18.75hrs

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Hello. I am currently on a jobshare contract working 18.75hrs per week (latter part of the week). As a condition of this contract I have to cover when my jobshare partner has booked annual leave. I had confirmed a few weeks ago that I would work the first part of this week Mon 13th to Wed 15th when my partner was off.
I unfortunately could not make it as I have Menieres Disease and had a bad flare up of it on Sunday morning. It has taken me a few days to recover and try to get my balance back to normal. Menieres Diesase is covered by the DDA and I receive disability benefit for it.
When I returned to work on Wed the 15th I offered to cover my partners jobshare hours this coming Sunday and Monday. I have since been told this is not necessary however due to the hours I had confirmed to cover and was absent from, I shall have to complete a Return to Work for and will therefore be treated as a sickness period.
Is this lawful?
Hello, my name is***** am a solicitor on this site and it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How would having a sickness period affect you in the workplace?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Ben,

It would bring my total to 3 this year (2 for Menieres and 1 for a sick day). Having 3 will trigger the absence policy whereby I will probably be called into a meeting.

When you and the employer agreed that you would cover your partner’s leave, it would have officially become your active hours. Whilst you may have only been covering these hours, they would have been treated as if they were officially yours because you were providing cover which was confirmed. So if you failed to attend work once these hours were confirmed, it would have been the same as if you had not attended to work your normal hours. In effect you had called in sick for those. Therefore, the employer would be able to treat this as normal sick leave and follow the usual procedures in relation to that. The fact that it was due to a disability does not mean it should not be taken into account, although if it triggers a meeting then the employer should discuss the disability and if there is anything else they can do to assist with that. However, the initial time off would be treated as any time off due to sickness and could be taken into account with other sickness absence in relation to their normal sickness procedures. 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.

Hi Ben,

Many thanks for your reply. Just to clarify, I should go ahead with the sickness procedure as normal and if a meeting is called then discuss the disability. My employer is fully aware of the disability and has been advised previously by an OH that the absences due to it are to be discounted.

Many Thanks


Thank you for your response, which I will now review. I will get back to you as soon as possible. Please do not respond to this message as it will just push your question to the back of the queue and you may experience unnecessary delays. Thank you
Hi sorry for the slight delay I was called into a tribunal earlier. Yes you should go ahead with the normal sickness procedure as that can apply to anyone regardless of the reasons for their sickness. However, at these meetings the employer should look at why you were off sick and then consider the issues relating to your disability. So if they have been previously advised that disability related absences should be discounted then you could remind them there that this is what should happen in this case too. Remember that having such a meeting does not mean you are getting penalised in any way, it is just an opportunity for the employer to look at your sickness record and the reasons in more detail and discuss the situation with you.
If your original question has been answered I would be grateful if you could please quickly rate my answer by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page - it only takes a second to do and is an important part of our process. I can still answer follow up questions afterwards if needed. Thank you
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