This Letter Inviting Employee to Meeting to Discuss Sickness Absence should be used to invite an employee to attend a meeting when an employee has been, or is, absent on sick leave and the employer wishes to consider:
- The reasons for the absence;
- When the employee is likely to return to work (in cases of long-term absence); and
- When the employee is likely to show improved attendance patterns (in the case of short-term, intermittent absences).
If the employer has received medical evidence in respect of the employee e.g. from the employee’s GP or from an Occupational Health Adviser, this should be discussed at the meeting and the employee given the chance to comment.
The meeting should also be used to discuss if there are any measures which could assist with the employee’s return to work, e.g. a phased return with the employee working fewer hours or carrying out different duties for an agreed period of time. If the employee has a disability, the employer is under a duty to make reasonable adjustments and the nature of these adjustments could also be discussed at the meeting.
This template letter sets out the issues to be considered at the meeting, which will enable the employee to prepare for the meeting in advance and assist the employer in showing that it has followed a fair procedure.
This letter gives the employee the right to be accompanied to the meeting. This is not a legal right but is good practice and, again, assists in demonstrating that the employer has followed a fair procedure. See Guidance Notes For Employers: Sickness And Absence At Work for more information.
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