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    • surveyor_101
    • By surveyor_101 10th Apr 18, 7:58 PM
    • 185Posts
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    surveyor_101
    Signed off sick but asked to attend review meeting
    • #1
    • 10th Apr 18, 7:58 PM
    Signed off sick but asked to attend review meeting 10th Apr 18 at 7:58 PM
    I have been off work sick since the 5/04/18.

    My workload went crazy in March as I was asked to take over a project from another member of staff and was just told one day that I was taking over by my Boss. The other member if staff told me in the first week of march his involvement ended in feb.

    I struggled with this as not used to as I joined them 5 months ago and had just been assisting on a live project and working on projects that had not started.I had expressed concerns in the weeks prior due to workload but my boss basically said we have no further resource.

    The week before last my daughter had an op and I was booked off for 1 day hols but needed two days due to complications before returning to work for 1 day prior to easter break. She has been unwell until this week and we have had many nights if broken sleep.

    I called in sick due to sickness and diarrhoea which I had but I believed it was stress related. I attended the doctors two days into my sickness due to my manager phoning me twice a day and requesting I see the doctor.

    I have issued a sicknote on the 3 rd day signing (until the 19th April) me off due to Family Circumstances rather than stress as I was unsure what to let the doctor put but she said she couldn't sign me off for two weeks (she advised 4 weeks) on the basis of sick and d. It's stress from work and my daughter's illness.

    I scanned and emailed this note to my line manager and they immediately queried the family circumstances. My doctor said they could not quesiton it.

    My line manager attended my home on 2pm Friday the 6th without notice. I was not in my mother in law had my children as I was trying to get some rest at my mum's hows some 8 miles away.

    I called him that evening and explained I was stressed due to workload and my daughters stressful time in the hospital and at home. He seemed fine with this and I agreed to contact him again on Wednesday the 11th.

    I have checked my work emails tonight and found a letter calling me to a meeting on the 16th at the head office some 54 miles away. This is to discuss concerns about my performance and absence, they are also asking why I said I had sickness and then the doctors sick note which they acknowledge says family circumstances. I have not been ill before and only had a day off for my daughter being in the hospital with complications from the op.

    I started a course of antidepressants last week and was starting to feel better but this had just made me worse.

    I am going to go and see my doctor tomorrow and get further advice but as I understand I am signed off and cannot be expected to attend a meeting about my work performance or absence.
Page 2
    • prowla
    • By prowla 11th Apr 18, 7:39 AM
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    prowla
    I don't think the boss turning up at the house is good practice.
    • Ozzuk
    • By Ozzuk 11th Apr 18, 8:31 AM
    • 1,399 Posts
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    Ozzuk
    I don't think its looking good for you. Having a new employee who should be fresh, motivated, ready to take things on going sick due to workload after only 5 months suggests serious issues. It could be on your side - you just aren't up to the job, or it could be on the employer side, expecting too much too soon, not looking after the employee, not having good procedures, poor performance from management (not load balancing employee workload).

    Sometime work comes in that just has to be done, you essentially have to suck it up and get on with it. If that becomes the norm though instead of the exception then its shows an issue with resourcing in the company and isn't sustainable.

    In your case, it appears to be the first time its ramped up - for you to react so strongly suggests an underlying issue with the role and/or underlying high anxiety levels. Equally though it looks like the company is failing to protect you.

    I'd be very open with your manager, and say you want to work with them to find a way to manage your workload and to contribute to the company - put as positive a spin on it as possible, but don't underplay the impact it is having on you. Hopefully they will see positive intent and work with you - honestly I'd say its 50/50, so companies will try and help you, some will just get shot of you.

    Good luck!
    • surveyor_101
    • By surveyor_101 11th Apr 18, 10:17 AM
    • 185 Posts
    • 124 Thanks
    surveyor_101
    Basically, my wife has been diagnosed in March, with breast cancer and my 4 year had to have an operation on her throat due to sleep apnea.

    I was helping on a project as a number 2.

    I was brought on to run two projects at a time which started in march but were supposed to start in jan.

    I now have 2 of my own projects that have started and it was discussed if i they took one of the those away could i complete the other project as the surveyor was struggling with 3.

    I said i might be open to it. He said he would give it some thought and signed off my review as good in end feb.

    In 5 months to managers on the project have resigned and one was sacked.

    There was no agreed handover date or time frame agreed. I got a call one day saying i expected to do all the reporting etc on this project now.

    Two weeks later i got a call saying you will be taking over the current project. I said who is taking my other project and they waid they would monitor how i coped with 3.

    In the following weeks i wrote emails to my manager expressing concern of my workload.

    I had a meeting and he said he would monitor but there was no further resource.

    Update

    My doctor won't advise me I am on hold to acas but he is issuing a new sick note to say stress.

    I am considering responding to the letter as follows:


    Dear XX

    Thank you for your letter dated 10th April 2018.

    I am sorry I was not home when you visited on Friday the 6th April 2018, if you had called beforehand I could avoided you having a wasted journey, as I explained I was resting at my mother's house getting some rest due to my children being home for the Easter Half Term.

    I have consulted with my doctor and he feels I am not fit to attend such a meeting at this time and notes that I am covered by a Sick Note stating I am unfit for work. This is due to me being signed off with stress and the medication I am on. He believes the stress is mostly work related but partially because of my daughter's operation and she has been unwell with broken sleep since.

    He has issued a new sick note today with 'stress' as the reason to clarify the situation. he also stated that sickness and diarrhoea can be and were most likely symptoms of stress. The previous Doctor who issued the sick note on the 5th April 2018 stating 'family circumstances' did so as I was stressed and embarrassed at my diagnosis was that of stress. I confirm I am happy for you to contact my doctor if necessary.

    In light of this, I would like to ask that the meeting is rescheduled for when I fell better but if you still feel they still need an interview me on the 16th April 2018, then I would like to propose that a meeting at my home address at 2:00pm as an alternative due to my ill health. If that is not convenient please suggest further dates and times in order to arrange an interview.

    As per my contract, I am entitled to be interviewed at home by a member of management when off sick. During this interview, I would like to discuss my absence and measures that may be helpful to aid return work.

    Yours sincerely
    Last edited by surveyor_101; 11-04-2018 at 10:57 AM.
    • surveyor_101
    • By surveyor_101 11th Apr 18, 10:53 AM
    • 185 Posts
    • 124 Thanks
    surveyor_101
    to clarify i have been off for 7 days.
    • surveyor_101
    • By surveyor_101 11th Apr 18, 11:01 AM
    • 185 Posts
    • 124 Thanks
    surveyor_101
    latest version of the letter.






    Dear XX

    Thank you for your letter dated 10th April 2018.

    First of all I am sorry I was not home when you visited on Friday the 6th April 2018, if you had called beforehand I could avoided you having a wasted journey, as I explained I was resting at my mother's house du to my children being home for the Easter Half Term.

    I have consulted with my doctor and he feels I am not fit to attend such a meeting at this time and notes that I am covered by a Sick Note stating I am unfit for work until the 19th April 2018. This is due to me being signed off with stress and the medication I am on. He believes the stress is mostly work related but partially because of my daughter's operation and she has been unwell with broken sleep since.

    He has issued a new sick note today with 'stress' as the reason to clarify the situation. he also stated that sickness and diarrhoea can be and were most likely symptoms of stress. The previous Doctor who issued the sick note on the 5th April 2018 stating 'family circumstances' did so as I was stressed and embarrassed at my diagnosis of stress related illness. I confirm I am happy for you to contact my doctor if necessary to confirm this.

    In light of this, I would kindly ask that the meeting is rescheduled for when I feel better but if you still feel they still need an interview with regard to absence me on the 16th April 2018, then I would like to propose that a meeting be at my home address at 2:00pm as an alternative due to my ill health. If that is not convenient please suggest further dates and times in order to arrange an interview.

    As per my contract, I am entitled to be interviewed at home by a member of management when off sick. During this interview, I would like to discuss my absence and measures that may be helpful to aid return work.

    Yours sincerely
    • elsien
    • By elsien 11th Apr 18, 11:51 AM
    • 16,913 Posts
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    elsien
    You might also want to add in something along the lines that you won't be accessing any work systems while off sick so please could further meetings be arranged/confirmed in writing to avoid any confusion.
    All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.

    Pedant alert - it's could have, not could of.
    • surveyor_101
    • By surveyor_101 11th Apr 18, 1:34 PM
    • 185 Posts
    • 124 Thanks
    surveyor_101
    No post for me today so the letter has physically arrived with me.

    Saw the postman in my street.
    • TELLIT01
    • By TELLIT01 11th Apr 18, 2:36 PM
    • 5,278 Posts
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    TELLIT01
    A manager shouldn't turn up at your home address unannounced unless they had been trying to get hold of you, were unable to do so, and were concerned for your safety. That could only reasonably be argued as being the case if you lived alone, which you don't. It is not unreasonable for management to want to meet with you at home but that should be at a mutually agreed time.
    The doctor was wrong to put 'Family Reasons' on the medical certificate. You cannot claim sickness benefits purely on the grounds that somebody else in the family is unwell.
    • motorguy
    • By motorguy 11th Apr 18, 3:29 PM
    • 17,156 Posts
    • 10,279 Thanks
    motorguy

    If your PDR was a 'Good' then they cannot just get rid as you say.
    Originally posted by karxlee
    Highlighting this again and for the avoidance of doubt - this is WRONG.

    Less than two years notice, and the employer can legally terminate employment with no reason (unless due to a protected characteristic / protected disclosure)

    I thought you would have known this?

    The O/P needs to tread with caution if they want to keep their job however my advice would be to find another job ASAP.
    Last edited by motorguy; 11-04-2018 at 3:40 PM.
    "We have normality. I repeat, we have normality. Anything you still can't cope with is therefore your own problem."
    • surveyor_101
    • By surveyor_101 11th Apr 18, 3:54 PM
    • 185 Posts
    • 124 Thanks
    surveyor_101
    I have been looking for another job for the last two months.

    Got some irons in the fire hopefully.

    Worst case is the look to terminate with paid notice.

    I spoke to HR Advisor today who said normally occupational health would want to meet with you but they have no OH. She said they can call a meeting regards absence but to question job performance was very strange action to take while someone is signed off sick.
    Last edited by surveyor_101; 11-04-2018 at 4:01 PM.
    • FBaby
    • By FBaby 11th Apr 18, 5:18 PM
    • 16,916 Posts
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    FBaby
    I am so sorry about your home situation, no doubt very stressful. Frankly, as a manager, if I got such a letter, it would not make me feel sympathetic at all. Firstly, the part about him coming to you comes across as cynical. Secondly, it's way too long and waffling. Thirdly, you say that your doctor says it's mostly stress related. Your doctor will only know what you tell him, so that's pointless.

    The overall tone of your letter is entitled and about your rights showing you don't care at all about the impact of your illness on the company.

    My advice would be to ditch the letter in the bin, contact your boss, have a talk about your situation as much as you are willing to share, and then say that you appreciate him wanting to meet with you but would he consider coming to yours instead of you going to Head of Office as you are concerned that you are not currently in a position to make that drive. Say that if this is not possible, could it be postponed until the end of your sick note when you are due to come back.

    In the end, either he wants to get rid of you asap, in which case, this letter will certainly not make him change is mind, or if he is willing to give you a chance, you'll have to show some commitment rather than going on about what more he should do to accommodate you.
    • Tigsteroonie
    • By Tigsteroonie 11th Apr 18, 5:30 PM
    • 22,806 Posts
    • 57,220 Thanks
    Tigsteroonie
    Dear xx

    Please find enclosed my latest Fit Note.

    I have received your letter regarding XYZ meeting. Unfortunately I do not feel sufficiently well to travel to HQ. Please would you contact me to arrange a date and time for that meeting to be held at my home.

    Kind regards
    Mrs Marleyboy

    MSE: many of the benefits of a helpful family, without disadvantages like having to compete for the tv remote

    Proud Parents to an Au-some son
    • ohreally
    • By ohreally 11th Apr 18, 5:44 PM
    • 6,721 Posts
    • 5,255 Thanks
    ohreally
    health would want to meet with you but they have no OH.
    Originally posted by surveyor_101
    The NHS can provide a contracted service for a small cost, you could enquire if your employers is aware and would they consider http://www.nhshealthatwork.co.uk/find-providers.asp

    In Scotland there is a similar fit for work service https://fitforworkscotland.scot/about-fit-for-work/index.html
    Donít be a canít, be a can.
    • Savvy_Sue
    • By Savvy_Sue 11th Apr 18, 11:18 PM
    • 38,907 Posts
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    Savvy_Sue
    I work in HR and you need to obtain a copy of your companies absence policy, it will state in there what the process is they have to follow. You can contact your HR dept for this, they have to provide you with a copy.
    Originally posted by karxlee
    That's good advice.

    Are you in a union? If so I would advise you to speak to them, if you are not the you can call ACAS for advice.
    Originally posted by karxlee
    So is that, although ACAS's advice is not always reliable: googling their site may give better results. the people answering the phone are limited in the information they give.

    Did you document your concerns about your workload - via email or meetings book in with your manager?
    You need to document everything you have discussed and how you were feeling.
    Originally posted by karxlee
    Also good advice, although this doesn't need to be an essay a day: brief notes!

    If your work has something called occupational health then you can be asked to be referred, your company will then be obliged to consider OH recommendations.
    Originally posted by karxlee
    Fairly astonished that someone working in HR does not know about the independent OH services which any employer or employee can access! Also note that being "obliged to consider" does not mean being "obliged to follow" OH recommendations! Especially for someone with such a short period of service. ohreally gives the links.

    If you do not feel up to traveling for the review you don't have to, you can ask for a meeting closer to your home. I would also take support with you so they can take notes whilst you concentrate on the conversation.
    Originally posted by karxlee
    You can ask, but they are not obliged to allow you to have support at this kind of meeting. What I would ask for is that they provide an independent note-taker who is not taking part in the meeting. But again, I don't believe they are obliged to do so.

    Can I ask for th meeting to be rescheduled for when I feel better?
    Originally posted by surveyor_101
    You can ask. They don't have to agree. You'll do better to ask for it to be scheduled closer to home.

    I was advised to turn my phone of and refrain from reading work emails as I need a break as it it!!!8217;s affectig my health.

    I happen to look this afternoon and saw this letter on an email.
    Originally posted by surveyor_101
    I don't know who advised you to do this, but whoever it was, I strongly suggest you follow their advice, because it is good!

    If my doctors feels this meeting will be damaging to my health can the write a letter saying this will make my stress work, assuming they issue a new sick note stating stress.

    I don!!!8217;t feel up to this meeting at the moment.
    Originally posted by surveyor_101
    Your doctor can write to request this, however if I had an employee with less than six month's service who was SO unwell they could not attend a sickness review meeting, I would seriously consider how long it was going to take them to recover, and wonder whether it was worth keeping them on. And whatever karxlee says, it would be very very easy to terminate your employment at this point, and very very difficult for you to do anything about it.

    My contract says I agree to be interviewed by a member of management while off sick at any time at my home if necessary.
    Originally posted by surveyor_101
    I agree that just turning up was not fair, although if he had been unable to speak to you at all then it is understandable.

    My response in such a situation would be to phone no more than once each (some employers require this), decline to discuss why I am not yet well enough to attend work because I still had a Fit Note, and then ignore calls from that person for the rest of the day. If it's a work phone, I'd have it switched off.
    Still knitting!
    Completed: 1 adult cardigan, 3 baby jumpers, 3 shawls, 1 sweat band, 3 pairs baby bootees,
    1 Wise Man Knitivity figure + 1 sheep, 2 pairs socks, 2 hats 2 balaclavas for seamen, 1 balaclava for myself ...
    Current projects: Poppies, mohair cardigan pattern arrived and going strong!
    • Les79
    • By Les79 12th Apr 18, 12:04 AM
    • 368 Posts
    • 434 Thanks
    Les79
    Originally Posted by surveyor_101 View Post
    I was advised to turn my phone of and refrain from reading work emails as I need a break as it it!!!8217;s affectig my health.

    I happen to look this afternoon and saw this letter on an email.
    I don't know who advised you to do this, but whoever it was, I strongly suggest you follow their advice, because it is good!
    by Savvy_Sue
    Pretty much agree with everything you've said, except maybe for this bit.

    Ok, yes stop reading work emails (if you are off sick then you shouldn't be working) BUT I would keep the line of communication open by way of a phone. I would also obtain the handbook/sickness policy info from HR and record any transgressions which happen (ie excessive contact) and maybe just not answer the phone.
    • Savvy_Sue
    • By Savvy_Sue 12th Apr 18, 2:55 AM
    • 38,907 Posts
    • 35,752 Thanks
    Savvy_Sue
    Pretty much agree with everything you've said, except maybe for this bit.

    Ok, yes stop reading work emails (if you are off sick then you shouldn't be working) BUT I would keep the line of communication open by way of a phone. I would also obtain the handbook/sickness policy info from HR and record any transgressions which happen (ie excessive contact) and maybe just not answer the phone.
    Originally posted by Les79
    I'd say if it's a work phone, it's switched off when you're not at work, especially if you're not at work because you're not well!

    if it's a personal phone then agree you can't just switch it off, but you don't have to answer every call from work.
    Still knitting!
    Completed: 1 adult cardigan, 3 baby jumpers, 3 shawls, 1 sweat band, 3 pairs baby bootees,
    1 Wise Man Knitivity figure + 1 sheep, 2 pairs socks, 2 hats 2 balaclavas for seamen, 1 balaclava for myself ...
    Current projects: Poppies, mohair cardigan pattern arrived and going strong!
    • surveyor_101
    • By surveyor_101 13th Apr 18, 2:25 PM
    • 185 Posts
    • 124 Thanks
    surveyor_101
    Have check my work phone and not heard anything since I emailed my letter to them.

    I sent an email yesterday requesting confirmation they have received my letter, copying in another manager.

    I also sent it registered post the same day (Wednesday 11.04)

    Maybe the new sick note with stress has made them think.
    • BorisThomson
    • By BorisThomson 13th Apr 18, 2:49 PM
    • 1,586 Posts
    • 3,431 Thanks
    BorisThomson
    Have check my work phone and not heard anything since I emailed my letter to them.

    I sent an email yesterday requesting confirmation they have received my letter, copying in another manager.

    I also sent it registered post the same day (Wednesday 11.04)

    Maybe the new sick note with stress has made them think.
    Originally posted by surveyor_101
    Honestly, all it's going to make them think is how to best manage your exit.
    • surveyor_101
    • By surveyor_101 13th Apr 18, 7:16 PM
    • 185 Posts
    • 124 Thanks
    surveyor_101
    I accept that they probably just want rid of me now and I have seen them bully and get rid of 3 employees so I don!!!8217;t want to go back. I just want to get myself better and find another job. I am tempted to offer to resign if they pay me two months notice,.

    They have sent and email saying they are sending another manager to interview me with regard my performance at my home on the suggest day. I have not met the person other than briefly and he is supposedly coming solo.

    The email states to review my performance in the role.

    Since I am signed off with stress I have been told that it!!!8217;s not advisable and I may be protected but disability act.

    I have a copy of my pdr dated 13/03/18 which shows no concerns with my performance.
    • marliepanda
    • By marliepanda 13th Apr 18, 9:14 PM
    • 6,348 Posts
    • 13,529 Thanks
    marliepanda
    Stress and family issues is not a disability.
    Suggesting you!!!8217;re protected by the disability act is, reaching, to say the least.
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