Absence line procedure

  • If you are off sick, you must contact the Absence Line on your first day of illness*. The telephone number is 01546 605 513.  You should make this call as soon as you know you will not be able to go to work and certainly within one hour of your normal start time.  The Absence Line will be open Monday to Friday from 08:00 – 17:00

*Please note – If your work requires to be covered; if you are relied upon to carry out a shift or scheduled work i.e. Driver/Escort, HGV driver, School Crossing Patroller or similar; or if your work begins out with the Absence Line opening hours then you must contact your line manager as soon as you know you won’t be able to go to work.  If you have any critical meetings which need cover re-arranged then you must ensure you contact your line manager/appropriate person as soon as possible.  Do not wait until the Absence Line is open as your manager will have to arrange cover for you.  Your manager will then call the Absence Line to advise them of your sickness.

  • When you call the Absence Line you will be asked a number of questions. Absence Line staff will then register your absence onto the HR system.  This is to record your absence and make sure you receive the correct sick pay.  You may also be offered support services such as Employee Counselling if appropriate.  Your manager will then be emailed to let them know of your absence.
  • Should you be off for more than three consecutive days, on day four you should contact your line manager and tell them whether or not your illness is likely to continue beyond seven days.
  • If you are off for seven days or less, when you return to work you should fill out a “self- certified sick form and return to work form” (Notification of Sickness Absence form ABS1/4).  Line managers are responsible for making sure that the Notification of Sickness Absence form ABS1/4 is completed for every absence.
  • When completed, the date of the return to work discussion should be updated by the line manager on My View and a copy of the completed form uploaded.  For further information on updating My View please find guidance available on the The Hub
  • If you fail to report your absence to the Absence Line then your absence may be considered unauthorised and your pay may be affected. 
  • You should phone the Absence Line on the day you return to work. If this is not a week day then call them as soon as it is open to let them know you have returned to work.  This will be recorded onto the HR system and Payroll will be told so that your normal pay can be re-instated. Your manager will be emailed to tell them that you have gone back to work. 
  • If you are off for more than seven consecutive days (regardless of whether or not these are working days), you must visit your doctor/GP and get a ‘Fit Note’ which must be sent to your line manager as soon as possible. If you don’t get a fit note your pay might be affected.  For example you might have a pay deduction or be paid late.  Keep sending in your fit notes to your line manager as you receive them from your GP.  Your line manager will forward them to the Attendance Team.  Both you and your line manager should stay in regular contact during the period you are off sick. 
  • On your first day of return to work (or as soon as possible thereafter), your manager will arrange a return to work interview with you. If you have reached a ‘trigger’ within the Supporting Attendance Policy, your manager will tell you of this and a separate Attendance Review Meeting will be arranged.  You can find more information about the council’s Supporting Attendance at Work Policy