termination on health grounds

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termination on health grounds

Hi

We have a female employee who just completed her 6 months here which means she
is no longer on probation.
Her age is 58 and lately, she is taking too many leaves due to being ill high
bP etc.

Now she says that she has been advised to seek rest for 3 weeks.

We are in the prime of our work right now and do not want her to collapse
during her duty.

Can we fire her on health grounds stating that we cannot accommodate a person
to work full time off she is in such a frail state of health?

Asked on September 10, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Virginia

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

Unless she uses paid time off to cover her absence (she'd have to use PTO; she has not been there long enough to qualify for FMLA leave), you may terminate her. While employers must provide "reasonable accommodations" to employees with serious medical conditions or disabilities, a required accommodation does not include allowing the employee to miss work unless she uses PTO or FMLA for the absence. (That's why the Family and Medial Leave Act was created: to give qualifying employees the opportunity to take unpaid leave for medical reasons.) You may fire an employee for absenteeism even if she has a medical condition, if she does not or cannot use PTO or FMLA.


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