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just received 3rd unauth. absence letter even tho off sick when pregnant...

(14 Posts)
Sella Wed 02-Sep-09 14:45:29

Hi all

I work for a pub company and rang in sick early June coz of morning sickness (only hourly paid and work approx 8hrs at week).

Bloke I spoke to was really nice said there was no probs. Then got unauthorised absence letter in July (apparently the 2nd but never got the 1st!). Rang manager (relief manager who knew me but hadn't worked with me). Told him situation, he said no probs, no need 4a note come back when ready.

Today got 3rd letter - on day of my 20 week scan! Off new manager saying going to sack me if I don't contact him by Fri...

I'm really peeved, have written him a letter outlining situation ,stating as far as I'm concerned not unauthorised, have midwife backing etc. Under circumstances can no longer work for a company who offer a pregnant woman such little support.

Do I stand a chance if I sue them (coz I really want to get the buggers now) and if so on what grounds. There's no way I'm going back to work for them, I haven't even met this bloke and rather than pick up the phone and ask me how I am he is just threatening me with the sack!

LaurieFairyCake Wed 02-Sep-09 15:20:30

I'm not sure I understand this - have you been back since early June?

Your 'midwife' backing - does it cover the rest of your pregnancy? Have you a doctors note for the last 10 weeks?

Sella Thu 03-Sep-09 08:20:00

No I haven't been back since June, get sick mostly at night so when first rang in sick said I would let them know when I was ready to come back, no one ever asked for a sick note. After unauthorised absence letter in July explained the situation to the then acting manager who also said there was no problem and to come back when ready, again not asked for sick note. When I spoke to midwife about it she just said I was absolutely right to stay off till I was ready and to not let them buly me.

After I spoke to manager in July I presumed everything was ok as I had asked him to phone me in future rather than sending me horrible letters and he said he would. Now a new manager has taken over and its started all over again.

Thing that really annoys me is that this is a big company and I've worked for them for nearly 10 years, this is my 3rd pregnancy whilst working for them too.

I know it's a really complicated story, and I handed in my notice yesterday coz the thought of going back to all that ill feeling when I'm pregnant horrifies me. Plus I found out yesterday I have a low lying placenta and all the possible risks that go with that so don't want to put myself under anymore stress.

PrincessToadstool Thu 03-Sep-09 08:22:52

You have been off for June, July, and August without a sick note?

Portofino Thu 03-Sep-09 08:38:51

You can only self-certify for one week. After that an employers needs a sick note from the doctor. I am actually surprised they didn't sack you already if you haven't been back since June. You certainly have no grounds to sue them!

rubyslippers Thu 03-Sep-09 08:41:29

you can't sue them - for what?!

Pregnancy related sickness does not count towards your overall sickness record but you still need the appropriate certification from a GP etc

I am sorry you haven't been well but you haven't followed any procedures

3 months absence without a note is extraordinary, pregnant or not, and i think your employers have been more than patient

EleanoraBuntingCupcake Thu 03-Sep-09 08:43:00

you were taking the piss

WriggleJiggle Thu 03-Sep-09 08:44:33

Troll, surely? No one could not turn up to work for 3 months and then complain about getting 3 letters.

flowerybeanbag Thu 03-Sep-09 10:09:15

Your manager isn't handling it brilliantly and you can't be disciplined, including sacked, for pregnancy-related sickness. But as you can only self-certify for a week, 3 months off sick without a medical certificate certainly is unauthorised; at the moment they only have your word for it that your absence is genuine sickness and is pregnancy-related.

They should have been chasing you for sick notes much sooner and much harder. Pregnant or not, 3 months off is a very long time for any company to have to put up with. They should have been pressing you for doctor's notes and ideally communicating with your doctor to find out about the prospect of you coming back to work in the near future and how they could support you.

Had you provided appropriate medical evidence that your absence was pregnancy-related, and your manager had threatened to sack you, you may have had a case, although I would not have advised you to resign without bringing a grievance.

As it is, there is no point bringing any kind of case as it will only result in a fairly reasonable defence from them that despite letters saying the absence was unauthorised, you failed to provide any evidence that you were either genuinely sick or that the sickness was pregnancy-related.

gingerbunny Thu 03-Sep-09 10:26:18

you,ve got morning sickness at night and you've had three months off work with only a couple of phone calls and no sick note. YABVU, in fact you are taking the piss really.
i don't think you have any grounds to sue.

EyeballsintheSky Thu 03-Sep-09 10:30:33

So you phoned in sick one night three months ago and have only been in touch since to complain about them sending you letters? Blimey, they're very tolerant, pg or not. I bet they're delighted you've resigned.

slowreadingprogress Thu 03-Sep-09 10:37:31

Thing is you need to provide a sick note, you don't wait to be asked for one; the law is that you can self certificate for one week, after that clearly you need a sick note whether asked for or not. It is also very necessary to keep in touch with your employer; at least weekly would be courteous. As morning sickness generally only lasts the first trimester (for most) they would probably be surprised it's still the case and would have wanted to know what's going on.

Sella Thu 03-Sep-09 14:49:20

Thanks for your advice guys I get the message! Just upset that after 10 years they obviously don't care. I would have got a sick note if I had known I needed one... I'll just go off with my tail between my legs then.

DorotheaPlenticlew Tue 08-Sep-09 10:44:39

hmm at "they obviously don't care"

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