Short Term Sick Leave Overview for Supervisors
When an employee calls in sick or injured, it’s important to keep the lines of communication open.
Maintain a positive outlook and create opportunities to discuss supporting them in their recovery. Avoid an “all-or-nothing” approach by inviting the employee to comment on what they're capable of doing. Encourage them to return to work by finding modified work options that suit their recovery needs.
When an employee requests short term sick leave:
- Determine how much time they'll be away from work.
- Make sure they’re eligible for Short Term Illness and Injury Plan (STIIP) benefits.
- Ask them what they can do and explore modified duties, hours, or work from home options.
- Remind them to record their days off work in the Time and Leave Management System. Your assistance may be required to enter time on their behalf. If this is the case, find out if the employee plans to top up their sick leave pay. Remind them that vacation credits are not earned while on sick leave.
- Immediately submit a WorkSafeBC Employer’s Report of Injury or Occupational Disease (Form 7) for employees that report being injured in the workplace.
You're responsible for managing routine cases, which typically means you have:
- No concerns about the absence;
- Available information to reasonably support a short absence (less than one month) with a likely return to work;
- No workplace issues or barriers;
- An employee who wants to return to work;
- Temporary modifications to duties or hours that you can accommodate without assistance.
Length of Leave
Sick leave is considered to be one continuous leave if the employee has been off for the same illness/injury without returning to work for 15 consecutive scheduled workdays before taking another day for the same illness or injury.
Sick leave recorded for a three-month period will be flagged for an early intervention and for a return-to-work specialist to follow up. If the leave is expected to be three months or longer, or the situation is complicated, submit an AskMyHR service request for help managing the situation. Select Myself or My Team/Organization > Leave & Time Off > Sick Leave.
Request a Doctor’s Certificate (ST02) when:
- You're collaborating with your employee on return to work planning and you need some guidance from the doctor
- The return to work date is unknown
- The return to work prognosis is believed to have changed and it has been 30 days since the last doctor’s certificate
- There is not enough information to approve a leave
The STIIP plan explains when a Doctor’s Certificate form can be requested under other circumstances.
The return to work prognosis means the date that the employee is expected to return to work, whether it’s on a gradual, or full, return to work basis. It’s not the same as a clinical or medical prognosis of a disease or condition. Supervisors don’t need the medical prognosis, but they do need the return to work prognosis.
The return to work prognosis can come from a variety of sources, e.g., a conversation with your employee or a Doctor’s Certificate form. Talk to your employee about returning to work. If you're collaborating on return to work planning, then you’ll select a return to work date together (this date is the return to work prognosis). If a Doctor’s Certificate was completed, it will tell you the return to work prognosis on the supervisor’s portion of the form.
Supervisors and managers can order the form by logging in to their office’s account. Once you're logged in:
- Look under "Forms."
- Select or search for "Short Term Illness and Injury Plan: Doctor’s Certificate (Product #7530951064)."