Dismissal: Second jobs and sick leave

2 mins

Posted on 14 Oct 2011

In Perry v Imperial College Healthcare, the EAT found that it was unfair to dismiss Ms Perry for misconduct for carrying on with a part-time job without permission while she was signed off on sick leave from her job at Imperial College.

Ms Perry worked part-time as a community midwife for Imperial College. She suffered an injury which meant that she was unable to perform this role and was signed off sick. However, she was not signed off from her part-time desk job with Ealing Primary Care Trust so she continued to work for Ealing while she received sick pay from Imperial College. Imperial College found out about this and, following an investigation, dismissed her. The EAT considered that Ms Perry’s dismissal was unfair in that there is nothing to say that an employee cannot claim sick pay from one employer and continue to work for another employer if fit to do so.

Ms Perry did not disclose that she would continue to work for Ealing wile on sick leave from Imperial College, despite being contractual required to do so and therefore the EAT reduced her compensation by 30% for contributory conduct. Imperial College tried to argue that Ms Perry should have disclosed that she was fit for desk duties. However this is not so. Had Imperial asked the right questions of Ms Perry and/or obtained advice from Occupational Health, then it would have easily have been able to determine this for itself.

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