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Dismissal for sickness FAQs

Can sickness be viewed as a potentially fair reason for dismissal?

Yes, but employers would be expected to:

  • contact the employee regularly;
  • tell the employee if their employment is at risk;
  • seek medical evidence on the employee's condition (see below);
  • if possible consider alternative employment.

Click here to read a model Capabilty Procedure

Where can you get more information?

Further information is available in our guidelines on dealing with capability issues, in the ACAS publications "Discipline at Work Handbook" and "Absence and labour turnover", and from the JACS office.

Please click on the following for a model  Poor Performance (Capability) Policy  .

Sample consent letters and forms for contacting an employee's own Doctor can be found in this section.

The section entitled "Tribunal precedents" contains more information from a Tribunal case that dealt with dismissal by reason of physical incapacity.


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