When an employee is no longer able to do their job due to illness or injury, it can be a challenging time for both employees and employers.
In these situations employees are often feeling vulnerable and stressed, worried about not being able to do their job, placing stress on other staff and generally concerned about what will happen to them financially if they lose their job.
Similarly, their employer may be feeling pressure about how long they’re going to keep the job open, how they’ll run their organisation, treat the staff member with dignity and manage the workload while they go through any process.
The law does not require an employer to keep an employee in employment who is unable to fulfil their role, due to illness or injury, or not able to do their work. The question is how long an employer should keep the role open for the employee to return to.
We suggest talking to your employer and reviewing the terms of your employment agreement.
Download our Guide to Medical Retirement
Naomi McRae is an HR specialist at PwC New Zealand and a blood cancer survivor.