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Joseph, Lawyer
Category: California Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 5299
Experience:  Extensive experience representing employees and management
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I was out for almost a year on medical disability and am now

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I was out for almost a year on medical disability and am now given ok by the doctor to return to the work. The HR department of the company I work however says to wait till they decide. What does that mean and what happens in the meantime
Hello and welcome to JustAnswer.

Unfortunately, your employer can decide whether or not they will allow you to return to work, even though you have been given the okay by your doctor to return to work.

This is due to the employment at-will doctrine, which is codified in California Labor Code Section 2922, which states:

"An employment, having no specified term, may be terminated at the will of either party on notice to the other. Employment for a specified term means an employment for a period greater than one month."

However, you are not returned to work, you can file for unemployment benefits, since you are now ready and available to work now that you have been given the okay that you can return to work.

You can file for unemployment benefits online here:
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Even if it was on medical grounds ? What other options are available to me ?
If you are able to perform the essential functions of the job and your employer still refuses to reemploy you, you could file a claim for discrimination on the basis of disability in violation of the Fair Employment and Housing Act.

You can file a complaint against your employer using the instructions available online here:
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Thank you. One final thought. HR told me they will look into it. But as per the doctor I should resume work tomorrow. Should I go to my workplace any way or wait for them to call me. What about the pay in the meantime
I would advise that you wait for them to call you in before you resume work.

Unfortunately, if you're paid on an hourly basis, your employer wouldn't be obligated to pay you prior to returning to work,

However, if you're salaried, and have unpaid leave or sick time, your employer would be obligated to pay you prior to returning to work.
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