If I was let go from my job on a day that I was admitted to a hospital, what can I do?

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If I was let go from my job on a day that I was admitted to a hospital, what can I do?

Also, I had just been released from a different hospital 2 days before that. Do I have any recourse from this?

Asked on June 18, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Illinois

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

There is no general answer to your question. An employer may not be fired because he or she is disabled; or for using some unpaid medical leave (like Family and Medical Leave Act, or FMLA, leave) to which he or she is entitled; or for properly using, in accordance with company policy, sick leave which he or she accured or earned as part of compensation.

On the other hand, the employee could be validly fired, even if sick, disabled, or in the hospital, for poor performance, as part of a restructuring, "for cause" (e.g. unexcused or excessive absenteeim, insubordination, tortious or criminal activity at work, violating company policy), or for any other valid reason, so long as it is truly a valid reason and not a pretext. One reason in particular that an employee may be fired is for missing work without permission--even for medical care--if he or she did not have sick days or other PTO to cover the absences and wasn't eligible for FMLA or similar leave provided by law.

Therefore, the answer to your question depends on the exact circumstances. You should consult with an employment law attorney about the facts of your situation in detail.


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