What is suspension?
The suspension is the point at which a worker is sent home from work, normally while accepting full compensation. Managers are qualified for suspend a worker pending an examination of gross unfortunate behavior or different genuine disciplinary issue. The privilege to suspend will normally be set out in workers’ agreement of business or the staff handbook (assuming any). While a suspension is anything but a disciplinary activity without anyone else’s input, it frequently prompts disciplinary procedures.
Why might an employee be suspended?
- To feature the reality of the issue.
- To stop the representative carrying on the gross unfortunate behavior that is being claimed.
- To stop the representative communicating with different workers or customers/clients of the business, which may some way or another reason an unfavorable impact to the business.
- To empower the business to appropriately research a disciplinary issue without prevention from the worker.
How should employers deal with suspension?
Bosses should step cautiously when taking the choice to suspend a worker; particularly if the representative is an expert individual, eg an instructor. The primary concern to recall is that suspension ought not be received as the default position, or an “automatic” response to a potential disciplinary issue.
Let the employee respond
A claim of bad behavior ought to be put to the worker before the business settles on the choice to suspend them, with the goal that they can react. Not permitting a representative to react to a charge of bad behavior could add up to a break of trust and certainty, giving justification for a valuable rejection guarantee.
The employer should always consider alternatives to suspension, eg transferring the employee to another department,having them work from home, changing their working hours or placing them under supervision.
Keep it short
If the employer makes the decision to suspend the employee, suspension should be for as short a time as possible.
Document and review
Bosses should record the choice to suspend so they can allude back to it anytime later on. They can do this by sending the worker a Suspension letter – a letter that briefly forbids a representative from performing work pending a disciplinary examination.
Suspension ought to likewise be held under audit. All close to home data gathered during the suspension system must be prepared as per your Data insurance strategy and worker protection notice – an announcement portraying how you gather, use, hold and uncover individual data.
What happens during suspension?
Can the employee take annual leave?
A worker can take occasion during a time of suspension. Nonetheless, the motivation behind suspension is to permit a sensible examination to occur (during which, it might be normal that the representative go to a disciplinary hearing). Accordingly, it isn’t suggested that a representative take yearly leave all through the sum of their suspension.
Workers can generally drop pre-booked yearly leave on the off chance that it concurs with a disciplinary examination; as long as they give the essential notification.
Communicating with staff
When communicating a suspended employee’s absence from the workplace, employers should be careful not to make any suggestion of the employee’s guilt (as the employer still owes the employee a duty of trust and confidence). What is communicated with staff should be agreed with the employee themselves.
Upon return to the workplace
In the event that the allegations against the employee are unfounded and the employee returns to the workplace, the employer may want to announce as such to staff members. The employer should also make sure the employee is up to date with their workload, and any training they may have missed out on during their suspension.
Suspension on medical grounds
In specific conditions, a wellbeing expert may prescribe that a representative is unfit to work. The business ought to consider modifying the working conditions or offering appropriate elective work. This elective work must be on terms that are no less ideal than the first job (ie the compensation rate must be the equivalent). In the event that it isn’t down to earth to make such alterations, at that point the business may need to suspend the worker until it is alright for them to come back to work.
Suspension due to a risk to new or expectant mothers
If an employee is a new or expectant mother then then employer must assess any risks in the workplace that may make it unsuitable for the employee to continue working. Common risks include if the role requires heavy lifting or carrying, long working hours or exposure to toxic substances. The employer should remove the risks and if this cannot be done then the employer should look into alternative options. Suspension should be the last resort and should only be applied if the risk cannot be removed.
Pay during suspension
During a time of suspension, representatives ought to get their full compensation and advantages.
A representative suspended because of a genuine charge of unfortunate behavior must get their full compensation except if they are not willing or ready to go to work (for instance since they are sick) or there is a reasonable authoritative ideal for a business to suspend without pay or advantages. This will be laid out in the business contract. Businesses ought to ought to seldom consider suspension without pay as this is bound to be viewed as a discipline method that could prompt allegations of an out of line disciplinary technique.
A representative suspended from take a shot at therapeutic grounds must get their full compensation except if they have been utilized for short of what one month, are not ready to go to work (for instance since they are sick), have been suspended for over 26 weeks or they have rejected reasonable elective work. A representative suspended on maternity grounds must get their full compensation except if they are not ready to go to work or have preposterously denied reasonable elective work.
Sick pay during suspension
If a suspended employee is ill and are not able to attend work again when required then they should receive their usual sick pay. Just like any other employee, it the sickness lasts more than 7 days, they must provide the employer with a doctor’s certificate. For further information, read our guide on Sick pay.
Suspension in summary
Employers should remember that suspension is not a “neutral act” and should be used with caution:
- Always check the employee’s contract to see whether there are any terms dealing with suspension. If there are, make sure these are complied with.
- Check any statutory guidance which may impact the decision to suspend the employee (ie certain local authority guidance states that suspension should not be the default option). The ACAS Disciplinary Code of Practice should also be considered.
- Other options should be exhausted first (eg the employee could work from home) and suspension should not be used as a disciplinary sanction.
- Suspension should be for as short a period as possible and kept under review.