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Use absenteeism point system to avoid favoritism disputes

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in Firing,FMLA Guidelines,Human Resources

Many employers use a point system to punish absenteeism, firing employees who accumulate too many points. Such a system negates the need to track the total number of hours of work an employee misses, since the employer is counting points rather than time.

Recent case: Kendall Johnson, who is black, was terminated when he accumulated three monthly unsatisfactory attendance ratings in a 12-month period. Employees were rated monthly for attendance and received an unsatisfactory rating in any month they violated the attendance policy by being absent or tardy. It didn’t matter how many times in a month the employee violated the policy.

Johnson sued, alleging a Hispanic female missed more total hours than he did before being fired. But she, too, had three unsatisfactory months before being terminated and was therefore treated the same. (Johnson v. Disney, No. 6:09-CV-1741, MD FL, 2010)

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