Sick leave policy
Most business does not have any kind of sick leave policy in effect because they are worried that their employees are going to take advantage of the sick leave policy. Studies have been done that show employers who provide their employees with a clear sick leave policy have healthier employees because employees are not afraid to stay home when they are sick. These studies have also shown that the employees rarely abuse the sick leave policy because they know what they can expect if that happens.
Here are some tips for you to follow when creating a sick leave policy for your business.
You are not required by federal law to provide your employees with any paid time off. You do not need to offer paid leave for when your employees are sick, some states will require that you provide your employees with sick leave, but it doesn't have to be paid. Federal law will affect your sick leave policy, so be sure to consult with the various regulations for business. For example, you will want to consult the Family and Medical Leave Act when creating a sick policy because it most likely applies to your place of business.
When creating the sick leave policy you want to state clearly in the policy what is expected from your employees. In creating a clear sick leave policy, you want to state what it is they can and can't do when it comes to taking time off for being sick. You need to clearly state the difference between sick leave and vacation. If you plan to allow your employees to use vacation days, for sick leave that needs to be stated in the policy. The policy will need to include whether you plan to pay them for any sick leave they use and how many days off you will provide them with pay for being sick. You will also need to state what your employees will have to do in order to qualify for sick leave, such as be employed with your business for a specific length of time or they need to provide a doctor's note stating that they have been seen by a doctor.
Your policy will also need to include the specific information about what is going to happen if they abuse the sick leave policy. You will want to clearly state any disciplinary measures that your business will take if the rules for the sick leave policy are not followed or if people are found to be abusing the system. For example, you might include a verbal warning on the behavior for the first offense and a write up for the second offense. By clearly stating what will happen to your employees if they do not follow the rules and begin to abuse the sick leave policy, you are lowering the chances of your employees abusing the policy.
You will want to enforce what you have written down in your sick leave policy. For example, if you require a doctor's note from your employees to receive the sick leave you will want to collect the doctor's note and place it in their file when they return to work. Just remember that if you require a note from a doctor's office it will be a generic note because of the new HIPAA laws that have been passed to protect people's personal information. You also need to ensure that you are following through with the appropriate disciplinary action if your employees are abusing the policy. Showing your employees that you are going to follow through with the policy that is in place will further discourage employees from taking advantage of the sick leave policy.
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Posted by DK