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Olga Galindo Carazo. 

Can I require the worker to report that he/she is on sick leave?

You no longer have to submit the medical leave report

On April 1, 2023, the obligation to submit sick leave, confirmation and medical discharge reports by the employees disappeared, since from this moment on, it is the Public Health Service who informs the company of this situation through its Authorized person of the Network System.

The Public Health Service informs the Social Security System of the sick leave situation, but this information is not automatic. It takes days, even weeks, before the Network Authorized person can see through the FIE file which employees are on sick leave, have had their sick leave extended or have been discharged.

And now, how is it done?

We receive many queries from companies on how to resolve this situation because they are often forced to recalculate the salary receipts at the end of the month, even if the salary has already been paid.

The Authorized Network Authorized Personnel do not have the solution to the problem, the most they can do is to inform their client of the medical leave situations once the Public Health Service has indicated it in the FIE file.

Shouldn’t the worker inform the company?

A recent judgment of the Audiencia Nacional dated December 28, 2023 changes the picture and sheds some light on this matter because it differentiates between the obligation to justify the medical leave situation and the obligation to inform of such situation.

It is clear that the employee cannot justify the medical leave situation since his family doctor does not give him the medical leave report, but the obligation to inform his employer that he is not going to go to work because he is sick is a different matter.

According to the provisions of the aforementioned ruling, yes, it is possible to require the employee to communicate his sick leave situation even though he is no longer obliged to submit the sick leave report.

Can the employee be penalized?

It should not be forgotten that there are many Collective Bargaining Agreements which classify as a minor offense the failure to give prior notice of absence from work for a justified cause and the failure to justify such absence unless it is proven that it is impossible to do so.

The failure to notify the company of the medical leave situation has an obvious impact on the organization of the work, there is no doubt that such notification is intended to avoid damage to the company, since the notification of the beginning of a temporary disability process allows the reorganization of the work and the normal functioning of the company’s activity.

Is there a contradiction between the two rules?

No, there is no contradiction whatsoever.

The obligation to communicate the sick leave to the company does not prevent the procedure of Royal Decree 1060/2022 of December 27 from being followed, since it is more of a complement, in our opinion, in accordance with the adequate provision of the service, without there being any prejudice to the employee.

Will it be the last word?

We do not know. In any case, we will have to wait for the possible pronouncements of the courts and, if necessary, what the Supreme Court may determine.

Do you need help? At Cigarrán Abogados we can help you (+34) 91.355.85.15

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