HR Home Forums Community As an employer, can I terminate a new employee ( 2 months) if he does not return to work when he was supposed to? the employee missed 7 days without notifying the company. The company tried to call him but he was not answering. The company sent him a termination letter after he was off for 1 week. He then called the supervisor and mentioned that he’s been sick and when asked about informing the company, he said he did call and leave a message with front desk but front desk never received a call from him. I’m assuming he only called the supervisor after he received the termination letter. The employee is 51 years old.

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  • Conner Lantz
    Keymaster
    Post count: 4836
    Conner Lantz
    Keymaster
    Post count: 4836

    It depends.
    If the employment is probationary, you can terminate due to lack of suitability for up to 90 days without having to get into a you-know-what contest over whether his attendance issues were just cause. But it must be clear that the employment is probationary, e.g., the contract, job offer and/or job description specifies it
    If the employment isn’t probationary, what does the contract say about attendance? What about your HR policies? Are the rules clear? Did he violate them? Can you document this?
    Did the employee provide a doctor’s note documenting he was sick and needed to miss 7 days–which is a lot, especially for a new employee.
    The one thing you need to be careful about: Did the employee indicate he had a disability and needed accommodations? If so, you’d need to consider the request which would involve obtaining medical information about the employee’s abilities and needs so you could make an assessment. But based on your account, it doesn’t sound like this is the case. Of course, I don’t have access to the file. So you need to cover your bases and make sure disability and accommodation requests weren’t actually issues.
    I wish I could provide more specific advice but I just don’t know enuf about the situation. Hopefully, the general principles I outlined, which you should NOT confuse for legal counsel, will help. Glenn

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