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Sick Pay Denied

Discussion in 'Pay and conditions' started by MrHister-E, Nov 3, 2018.

  1. MrHister-E

    MrHister-E New commenter

    Hi Everyone,

    I'm new here and guess it's probably fairly common but my first interaction is asking for advice.

    I have looked through the forum to see if my question has already been answered.

    I was signed off sick prior to the summer holidays, with my sick note running out on or around 1st August.
    I remained ill through the holidays and in to the autumn term.
    I sent in a new sick note from 1st September onwards but it wasn't until I got a letter from the school in September that I realised I needed to send in a note to cover the summer holidays.
    The letter said as I hadn't sent in a note I would only get statutory sick pay for this period, and this is what happened.
    I called my union who told me to get a backdated sick note from my gp and send it in.
    I did this without an issue as I genuinely was ill all throughout the holidays and beyond but the school refused to pay me for this period as they said I hadn't met the terms of the burgundy book.
    To clarify the details:
    I was on full sick pay when the note ran out at the start of august, with around 40 days of my full pay entitlement remaining.
    I provided the backdated note to the school the day after I received the letter from them telling them me it was missing.
    Taking into account the backdated note there were continuous notes covering the whole period of my absence from before to after the holidays.

    The union are saying I should be paid the sick pay but the school are not having any of it. From what I've read in the burgundy book, I think I should be entitled to it, although I recognise I should ave sent a note in in the first place, ill know if there is a next time.
    I don't have any rights to go to an employment tribunal as I don't have 2 years service.

    The union are still looking in to what if anything can be done, but I just wanted a second opinion really, from anyone who might have a bit of knowledge on this.

    Apologies for such a long first post.

    Any opinions would be gratefully received.
  2. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    If the school thinks that you were fit to work during the summer, they would have to pay you as usual, so this seems unfair. Perhaps you were OK in August and got ill again at the start of term!

    I would imagine that if it came to a legal challenge, it would be for unlawful deduction of earnings, for which your short period of service does not apply. But we can only give opinions on here - only your union can say if you have got a case. Good luck.
  3. peapicker

    peapicker Star commenter

    Two years' continuous service is only relevant when considering potential claims for e.g. unfair dismissal or redundancy.

    Rights in respect of assertion of statutory rights kick in from day one and that would include a claim for unlawful deduction of earnings (and things like discrimination, some parental rights...)

    I have no idea what the burgundy books says about notification of sickness absence and whether the school is in breach of your contract for failing to pay you. Your union should know, however. I bet @Rottweiler would know!

    By the way, IF it is relevant, a claim for unauthorised deduction of earnings is brought in the County Court, if you are still employed by the employer and not the ET.
  4. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    8.1 A teacher shall not be entitled to sick pay unless:
    (i) notification is made to the employer as may be required, not later than the fourth working day of absence;
    (ii) a doctor’s statement is supplied not later than the eighth day of absence;
    (iii) subsequent doctor’s statements are submitted at the same intervals as they are required for D.S.S. (N.I.) purposes and on return to duty in those cases where the absence extends beyond the period covered by the initial statement and at similar intervals during a period of entitlement to Statutory Sick Pay;

    I guess that the third point is the relevant one.
  5. Rott Weiler

    Rott Weiler Star commenter Forum guide

    Well, I know where to find it! Here


    Para 8.1.(iii) on page 10 is probably what they have in mind, although it's 18 years since Burgundy Book was last revised so its detail about this doesn't really tie in with government fit note rules any longer.

    My thought was the same a @Pirhana, if they don't accept that you were sick during August then surely they should be paying you salary?
  6. MrHister-E

    MrHister-E New commenter

    Thank you for your responses Peapicker, Piranha and Rottweiler.

    I had the same thought regarding if I wasn't deemed ill, surely full pay should have resumed. Without giving too much away though, this is part of a wider issue of bullying and intimidation (which the union are also aware of). They wouldn't dare suggest I wasn't ill as they know I could get copious amounts of evidence from various doctors to prove otherwise if necessary. They are either just trying their luck or hoping to get away with it on a technicality.

    BB 8.1 (iii) is the only thing that I picked up on too. I'm not particularly versed on the BB but I'm assuming that N.I is standing for National insurance. I've tried googling how this relates to sick notes but can't find anything.

    My thinking is though that if I had fallen foul of the rules here, presumably this would have also made me ineligible for Statutory sick pay too? So I'm thinking, if this is their argument, surely I should have received nothing?!?

    I shall of course be listening to the advice of the union but I would like to be clear on this in my own mind too. Therefore, any further input is welcome.

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