Don't say you weren't warned: the dangers of 'pulling a sickie'


The England v Wales game kicks off at 2pm today, so it seemed an apt time to mention a recent case about 'pulling a sickie'.

In Metroline West Ltd v Mr Ajaj, the Employment Appeal Tribunal ruled that:

"... an employee [who] “pulls a sickie” is representing that he is unable to attend work by reason of sickness.  If that person is not sick, that seems to me to amount to dishonesty and to a fundamental breach of the trust and confidence that is at the heart of the employer/employee relationship."

The facts in that case were a little more convoluted than a one-off absence on the day of a football game, but it serves as a useful reminder to anyone thinking of suddenly coming down with a mysterious flu this afternoon!

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Almost three quarters of the UK HR directors surveyed believe employees are likely to call in sick or make an excuse for skipping work the day after a major sporting event such as the Euro matches. More than a fifth consider it “very likely”.
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