Attendance Issue - nepotism?

We recently had an employee miss three consecutive days of work due to being sick. When she returned to work her manager requested a doctor's note releasing her to return to work and told her that if she couldn't produce this note she would have to leave work until she had one. She has filed a complaint with us because she found out her co-worker (who happens to be the manager's son) was not required to submit a doctor's note to return to work when he was also recently gone for three days due to an illness. Now here's where I am confused (aside from being royally irritated with the manager) - our company policy does not state anywhere that an employee who misses 3 consecutive days of work has to submit a doctor's note releasing them to return to work. However, is there some kind of law here in Kansas that requires that for ALL employees? I can't find any information regarding this issue and I'm not sure if it's a regulation or just "common knowledge." Obviously, the employee has a very valid complaint and it will be investigated completely. I know how we will proceed with this but I want all my ducks in a row prior to the conclusion of the investigation. Also, I want to amend our policy to make it mandatory for all employees to submit doctor's notes when they are out at least 3 consecutive days due to illness - whether the state requires it or not. Thanks for your help - attendance issues aren't my strong point. [:S] 


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  • Ack - forgot to mention that she filed a discrimination complaint since the issue has arisen due to the rules being different for the manager's son.......
  • Assuming there is no law in Kansas requiring employees to bring in a return to work authorization from their dr (and I'd be surprised if there was such a law), I wouldn't recommend changing your policy to require this except in cases of an extended leave of abence for a disability, injury, worker's comp, major illness etc. If someone is out for 3 days with a bad cold or stomach bug they may not even go to the dr thus making it very difficult if not impossible to get a dr to sign off on a note saying the employee is ok to return to work. If its not written or handled properly these these types of policies can create a lack of trust between managers and their staff as employees will just think the manager is asking for the dr's note because the manager doesn't believe they were sick. The real intent shouldn't be to find out whether the employee told the truth rather to make sure its safe for the employee to be at work after a major illness or injury.
  • I agree with you on that. But I highly doubt our manager requested a doctor's note from this girl because she wanted to ensure the safety of her other employees - therein lies the problem. And this is just the tip of the iceberg apparently. There are a lot more "instances" coming to light that are highly suspicious. It has turned into one great big fat snowball and it is gaining speed. Amazing what comes to light once someone "breaks the seal" and brings it to the attention of the necessary peopl, huh?
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