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Do you know the answers to three key issues around sick leave

by , 12 October 2015
You employees are entitled to paid sick leave. During the first six months of an employee's employment, she's allowed to take one days' paid sick leave for every 26 days worked.

Thereafter, the 'sick leave cycle' comes into effect. This cycle means the employee is entitled to an amount of paid sick leave which is equal to the number of days she would've normally worked in six weeks - within a 36-month cycle.

Sick leave, alongside sick leave abuse, can raise many questions. And you may be wondering how to go about it.

Having said that, here are three key issues that you should keep in mind when it comes to sick leave:

1. What happens when your employee runs out of sick leave?
If an employee runs out of sick leave and falls ill, you don't have to pay him. You should then treat his absence as unpaid leave. He can claim from the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) in this instance.
You can also agree with the employee to make up the exhausted sick leave for annual leave. You can also reduce the wages and increase the number of paid sick leave days he gets. But remember, you can only do this through an agreement with your employee.

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2. Do you have to pay an employee sick leave for injuries on duty?
No, you don't.
Employees can get compensation for injuries on duty. So you won't have to pay the employee for sick leave if he receives compensation under the Compensation for Injuries and Diseases Act (COIDA).
3. Can an employee take sick leave during his notice period? If so, can you increase the number of days in the notice period?
Employees who still have sick leave days available can take them during the notice period.
And no, you can't increase the number of days in the notice period if this happens.
If you suspect that he wasn't really sick when he took off, you'll need to investigate.

So, there were three key issues to keep in mind when it comes to paid sick leave.
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