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Reasons for sick leave absenteeism can vary widely dependent on the individual circumstances. The individual circumstances of each instance of sick leave absence should be considered when determining what disciplinary action, if any, to take. Consistency and fairness are key to ensure that any management action taken can be justified.

Disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal, typically relates to matters related to Employee conduct. The most common instance in which the question of disciplinary action arises relates to intermittent short-term absence, often with no apparent specific medical reason or pattern. An organisational sick leave policy should outline clearly the sick leave reporting procedure an Employee is required to comply with during any instance of sick leave. This usually includes a requirement to provide notification of the absence initially and to keep the Line Manager up to date during the period of sick leave and the provision of medical certificates and other documentation such as illness benefit forms.

An organisational sick leave policy should also specify the circumstances in which disciplinary action, including the withholding of sick pay, will apply. In the event of non adherence to the policy, the Organisation should ensure action is taken on a consistent basis, taking into account the individual circumstances and with full regard to fair procedures.