Return to work, phased. — Scope | Disability forum

Return to work, phased.

vapegirlclouds Member Posts: 10 Connected
edited August 2020 in Work and employment
I'm registered sight impaired, have a complex motor tic disorder with chronic pain from various issues & a rare disease. 
In march, I was sent home by my employer due to covid. Due to the nature of my disabilities I couldn't work from home.
I'm incredibly fortunate that I received full pay.

I've sat at home for almost 5 months, the first time I left the house was last Monday to go back to work.
I spoke to my manager and she agreed a phased return continuing with special leave over the next 7 weeks. 
2 days a week
 To get me physically able to work a full week again.
Since the meeting she's changed her mind and today has said because the business has been good to me, I should be good back and use annual leave for the days I'm not in work.

I had a feeling, so requested a fit/sick note from my gp, stating all this asking for a fit note in support of my phased return and they've said yes.
And are supporting me in a phased return back to work as I physically & mentally can't go back 40 hours straight away.

My employer does support phased returns for those on sick leave, while I wasn't sick, I was completely inactive and it will be a struggle for me.
Does my employer have to accept the fit note or will I have to use annual leave?
I'm sorry if I sound ungrateful, I don't mean to.
Just want some advice.
Many thanks.


  • Cressida
    Cressida Member Posts: 956 Pioneering
    edited August 2020
    @vapegirlclouds if you are a member of a union you could ask them for advice. it does sound as those your employer has been pretty generous and supportive. I work for a large organisation and when they talk about 'special' leave it is usually unpaid. 
  • janer1967
    janer1967 Member Posts: 13,393 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi and welcome @vapegirlclouds

    Most employers would support a phased return to work and usually the pay is made up from using any sick pay entitlement first , then yes using holiday pay and then unpaid leave.

    They have no obligation to pay you for the hours not worked even if you supply a fit note but  most try and ensure your pay is made up from sick or holiday pay

    A fit note from a GP is only a recommendation and the employer only has to make the adjustments if they are reasonable and if the doctor says needs reduced hours thats all they are obliged to look ar offering

    When I worked in HR in lots of companies the maximum length of a phased return was 8 weeks. Employees had to return on at least 50% of their contracted hours and increase this every 2 weeks before returning to full hours.

    If they could not return for 50% then they were deemed not fit to return at that time

    So in essence what you are being offered is quite generous. Your company should have a policy which you could read and make sure they are following their own policy
  • Tori_Scope
    Tori_Scope Posts: 7,086

    Scope community team

    Hi @vapegirlclouds! It looks as though you've been given some really useful information from @janer1967 and @Cressida. I just wanted to ask whether this information had helped you out? Do you have any further questions or concerns?
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  • Chloe_Scope
    Chloe_Scope Scope Posts: 10,566 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @vapegirlclouds, I really hope the phased return to work will be successful. I appreciate how hard it can be to build up the hours you work. Please take time to rest when you can and let us know how you get on. :)