Suffer from clinical depression – given final notice by employer for taking vacation time

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Suffer from clinical depression – given final notice by employer for taking vacation time

My employer gave me a final notice for taking too much time off. Said I wasn’t
giving 2 weeks notice to take vacation days. I haven’t abused my paid time off
nor am I in the hole with time taken. I suffer from clinical depression and am
having a very difficult time now where I may take a day here or there when I
simply cannot get out of bed or function. Work-wise it has not affected my work
performance as I have not been late on deadlines or priorities. I am basically
on probation for 90 days now which just garners more anxiety.

I realize I need to let my employer know about my clinical depression, but want
to do it the right way so I need to know if I just get a note from my doctor or
what?

Asked on January 30, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

There is no right to simply miss work whenever you want: that is not a "reasonable accommodation" to a disability or condition such as depression, because it is not reasonable for an employer to not know when an employee is coming into work or not. When you have sick days, you can use them if your condition prevents you from coming into work, but otherwise, if you simply miss days from work with sufficient prior notice and approval from your employer, when you don't have or use sick days for the, you may be terminated. It does not matter if you don't think that it is affecting your performance or deadlines or priorities; the employer, not the employee needs to decide if you are fulfilling job requirements, and one reasonable requirement is attendence. You have to come into work even when you don't want to, except, as stated, when you have and use sick days for the absence.
An employer's only obligation is, as stated, to make a "reasonable" accommodation to your condition, but again, it is not reasonable for the employer to not be able to control an employee's scheduel or know when he or she is coming to work.


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