Discussions online… Sickness during holidays

Q Would an employee who booked a holiday and was then off sick during that holiday (covered under a self-certification form as less than seven days) be allowed to cancel that holiday and have it at a later time that year? We have nothing in the contract of employment to that effect.

A I work for a large food retailer. It is actually allowed with us, providing that we are notified with a medical certificate by the first day of their holiday.

A The policy I previously used was that if the employee contacted either their line manager or HR on the first day of their sickness during their annual leave, then it could be reclaimed. If the employee did not notify anybody at the time, they lost their right to claim sickness instead of leave.

A We have a policy that states if someone is sick during planned annual leave, then to cancel the leave they must produce a GP’s note (at their own expense). The employees will not get their holiday back by producing a self-certificate.

A We do not allow employees to cancel and re-take their holiday once it has started if they fall sick. But we do require notification for statutory sick pay (SSP) purposes.

A Why do you need to know for SSP purposes? If you are paying SSP in full or as part-payment and/or declaring that the employee is sick for SSP purposes, you are then accepting that they are sick, and are then leaving yourself open to be challenged. It just puzzled me a bit, or maybe I’ve got the wrong end of the stick. If they are on holiday, they are on their own time and it is irrelevant to the company if they are sick or not if the firm has a policy of not giving back leave.

The purpose of recording sick leave has been to ensure any linking periods of SSP are included if an employee is sick again in the future, but this is an old rule and may no longer be valid.

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