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LawTalk, Attorney
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 37855
Experience:  30+ years legal experience and I keep current in Employment Law through regular continuing education.
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How does the US Gov. AWOL regulation apply to an employee who

Customer Question

How does the US Gov. AWOL regulation apply to an employee who has no S/L or A/L due to sickness. The employee called in to report or TEXT to let his supervisor know that he
would not be in to work. The supervisor stated that this was not acceptable and reported this as AWOL. He is also being required to provide documentation for sickness of one or two days absence. I am not sure if AWOL is the right decision in this situation or if documentation is required for one or two days sick leave.
Ed S.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  LawTalk replied 2 years ago.
Good afternoon,
I'm Doug, and I'm sorry to hear of the confusion. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today.
While many people have grown up with the idea of texting when the occasion arises for the need to communicate with someone, unless your employer specifically asks for a text to notify them of an illness and request for time off, a TEXT should not be used. A phone call or an email if a phone is not available is the expected manner of communication.
Throughout the government, AWOL is a term used for being absent from one's work position without permission. Absence without official leave (AWOL) is a period of absence without pay for which the employee did not obtain approval or for which a request for leave is denied. AWOL is based on the supervisor's determination that no form of leave (annual, sick, LWOP, etc.) has been or should be approved for the absence based on existing evidence. AWOL can be converted to appropriate leave when a supervisor receives and is satisfied with documentation justifying the absence. AWOL is not disciplinary in nature.
The reason they are asking for documentation of the employee's illness is to determine whether the absence was justified or not. If the absence was not justified, then the employer may take disciplinary measures against the employee.
You may reply back to me using the Reply link and I will be happy to continue to assist you until I am able to address your concerns, to your satisfaction.
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I wish you and yours the best in 2015,
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
My total question was not answered (Requirement for documentation for one or two day sick leave)?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Doug'Are you planning on answering this?
Expert:  LawTalk replied 2 years ago.
Good afternoon,
I apologize for the delay. I have been assisting another customer with a lengthy discussion.
Sorry, I thought that I did address that issue. Let me be a bit more succinct in my answer.
Because the employee has no remaining sick leave or vacation time, they can be disciplined for missing work. The request for documentation of the illness is legally allowed to be asked for, to support the claim of illness the employee is making.
The level of discipline will, I presume, be based on whether there is documentation of an illness or not. That is how the procedure typically occurs when there is an allegation of being absent from work without permission.
I understand that you may be disappointed by the Answer you received, as it was not particularly favorable to your situation. Had I been able to provide an Answer which might have given you a successful legal outcome, it would have been my pleasure to do so.
If you have additional questions, you may of course reply back to me and I will be happy to continue to assist you further until your questions have been answered to your satisfaction.
Kindly take a moment to rate my service to you based on the understanding of the law I provided. Please understand that I have no control over the how the law impacts your particular situation.
Thank you,