Sick leave rules ‘will negatively affect small businesses’

  • Posted

Posted 12/04/2010

New employment law relating to sick leave and holiday pay is unpopular, research has suggested.

Recent changes to the European Working Time Directive give employees the right to claim holiday pay even if they are off work due to long-term sickness.

However, a poll carried out by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) found that 38 per cent of companies will now be more careful about who they hire in a bid to avoid taking someone with a history of health problems on.

Furthermore, 21 per cent said they may stall recruitment altogether and 17 per cent said they may be more likely to make staff on long-term sick leave redundant.

FSB representative John Walker said this shows that small companies will be negatively affected by the new legislation and urged the European Commission to withdraw it.

“Measures put in place by the European Court of Justice on sick leave [are] hampering small businesses’ ability to do the job at hand and help tackle unemployment,” the expert opined.

Last month, Personnel Today reported a case in which an employer was ordered to pay backdated holiday wages to an employee who could not use them up because he was signed off work sick.


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