2022-05-31

Paying, proving, and investigating sick leave

It’s that time of the year that every employer dreads, the flu and colds season paired with Covid-19. Sick notes are streaming in, employers are frustrated, you are paying an employee that is not rendering a service, just another expense, are employees being honest regarding sick leave or are they abusing the system.

With the easing of Covid-19 restrictions and winter the flu season is also upon us, and so is the increase in sick leave.

HOW MUCH PAID SICK LEAVE?
- Employees working 5-day weeks: 30 days over three years.
- Employees working 6-day weeks: 36 days over three years.

In the first 6 months of employment employees accumulate 1 day paid sick leave for every 27 days worked. This sick leave is deducted from the 30-day allocation after those 6 months.

Any sick leave over the allocation is unpaid.

HOW MUCH IS PAID FOR SICK LEAVE
The wage that would ordinarily be paid for that day’s work. 
Is also means that if sick leave is a Friday, but the employer works half a day on Friday, the sick leave payment is also half a day.

Payment is made on the presentation of a valid doctors note.

DOES THERE ALWAYS HAVE TO BE A DOCTOR’S CERTIFICATE TO RECEIVE PAID SICK LEAVE?
No. Two consecutive days illness does not require a doctor’s certificate, neither does 2 days over an 8-week period.  Any sick leave more than that must have an accompanying valid doctors’ certificate for payment.

The onus is on the employee to prove that they were incapacitated and unable to attend work and the only way that an employee can do that is by providing a medical certificate that was signed off by a registered practitioner that who is certified to treat and diagnose.

INVESTIGATING MEDICAL CERTIFICATES
Employers can investigate sick notes to verify if the employee saw a registered practitioner or nurse at the local clinic.

To investigate sick notes and or clinic notes please visit the following websites:
Professional Nurses: https://www.sanc.co.za/eRegister.aspx
Doctors: https://hpcsaonline.custhelp.com/app/i_reg_form-

CAN AN EMPLOYEE BE DISMISSED FOR BEING DISHONEST ABOUT BEING ILL?
Yes. When Woolworths decided to dismiss a senior employee to incapacitated to drive to work but did go to a rugby match with his father an hour away, the Labour Court ruled that Woolworths decision to dismiss was fair.

Initially the The CCMA ruled in favour of the employee stating that he was charged with gross misconduct and not dishonesty and that the employer could not prove that the trust relationship was broken beyond repair.

The Labour Court however ruled that the trust relationship between the employer and the employee was broken down and that dismissal was the appropriate sanction.

“Employees are required to conduct themselves with the utmost honesty and integrity in their dealings with their employer. Where the trust relationship is broken a continued employment relationship is simply untenable.”
Alicia Venter

Mark - 08:29 @ common, Industrial Relations, Human Resources | Add a comment

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