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What should I do about employee who called in sick after being disciplined?

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in Human Resources,The HR Specialist Forum

“I have an employee who called in sick on the most important day of the month for his position. Rumor has it that he was upset about being disciplined the day before. Can I discipline him for calling in to work without a good excuse. He already won’t get paid for the day because he has used up all his sick and vacation time.”—Sharon R.


See responses below

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

John May 5, 2010 at 9:36 am

You said no benefit time left. So doument the unexcused absence, and advise employee further such unexcused absenes will result in appropriate actions. Follow your normal policy on requesting documentation or verification relating to sick time. Deal with facts not rumors. The comment of being “better balanced” is foolish pandering and serves to encourage abuse of benefit and leave policies so I disagree with that totally.

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owner May 5, 2010 at 8:46 am

If the “illness” and time off are within policy, then “allowing” it may give the employee psycological “relief” and they may come back better balanced to do their work

The most important thing is that POLICIES must be enforced equally all the time, to all the employees. How you feel about the situation should not affect your policy enforcement. What is the policy on sick time?

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Kelly May 5, 2010 at 8:33 am

We can never act on rumor… follow your policies on dealing with unpaid absences and counsel/discipline accordingly.

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Tami May 5, 2010 at 8:25 am

There may not be anything that you can do, except ask if he can produce a doctor’s note for the day in questioned. If he cannot, then document the unexcused absence for his employment file. Warn him that this is what happened and if there are any further unexcused absences before he has accrued any further sick/vacation time, you will have no choice but to terminate him.

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HR Manager May 4, 2010 at 11:33 pm

Well, it’s not a wise move to discipline a staff on the basis of a rumor only. Find out the truth. If he called in sick and it’s a lie then you should sternly discipline him.

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Mary May 4, 2010 at 5:27 pm

Kindly ask for a statement from his doctor who ordered this absence.

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