Injured employee may have returned too soon: Can we require him to take more leave? — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

Injured employee may have returned too soon: Can we require him to take more leave?

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Q. We’re afraid that a previously injured worker returned from medical leave too soon. Can we require him to take additional leave if it’s obvious that the injury is still hurting his job performance?

A. Be careful here. Did the worker’s physician release him to return to work? If so, has his performance deteriorated since his return?

If he was medically cleared to work and his performance has not deteriorated, don’t presume that the employee is not medically able to work.

The best thing to do is to approach him and have a talk about the performance issues he is having. If he attributes those issues to his medical problems, then you can suggest that he ask his physician to re-examine him to confirm his ability to perform his job duties.

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