You can require an obviously troubled employee to get help — Business Management Daily: Free Reports on Human Resources, Employment Law, Office Management, Office Communication, Office Technology and Small Business Tax Business Management Daily

You can require an obviously troubled employee to get help

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If you have an employee who obviously needs psychiatric intervention, you can demand he get outside help—if you can show his behavior is job-related and may affect his ability to do his job or do it safely.

Recent case: Otis Parham was placed on paid medical leave from his job at General Motors (GM). The company told him to get treatment for an apparent psychiatric problem after a company doctor concluded he was not taking medication for a form of paranoia.

GM referred Parham to the doctor because he was acting oddly at work, accusing a co-worker of putting a knife to his chest and others of posting anti-gay slurs. Apparently neither accusation was true.

Parham sued, alleging the company regarded him as disabled. The court tossed out the suit, concluding that GM had a legitimate business reason for the fitness exam. Plus, no one fired Parham. The company simply placed him on leave. (Parham v. General Motors Corporation, No. 1:06-CV-370, ND IN, 2008)

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