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Allen M., Esq.
Allen M., Esq., Employment Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 19177
Experience:  Employment/Labor Law Litigation
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I JUST read, the following in the very back of a 52 page

Customer Question

I JUST read, the following in the very back of a 52 page employeed handbook after 8 mos. of employement with my company: " Only certain emergencies, including extrations, root canal work, abscesses, & oral surgery, are eligible for consideration of sick leave benefits. The employee must bring a written statement from the dentist stating the nature of the work done & the time for which he/she should be excused from work to receive sick leave benefits."
I went to the dentist this week for an emergency extraction. But I resent that my HR dept. told me today I must give them the above. Recently my supervisor & I were talking about all the dental work we both need in our 60's. So she KNEW I was going to have extractions. The 4 am phone call to her work voicemail telling her I'd be in late for dental visit due to losing sleep to due sudden onset of toothpain in the night and that I would be in later, should suffice, correct? Under HIPAA....can my employer legally require I tell them about my visit? I would rather just NOT use my sick leave than give my info in written form from my dentist, because I'm an employee in excellent standing. I just don't like being made to give out my dental info.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Employment Law
Expert:  Allen M., Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Yes, they can. HIPAA doesn't stop someone for asking for information. What is does is stop the holder of information from giving it out without your permission.

An employer is not required to give sick leave. When they choose to, they can create reasonable limitations to its use. If the employer only allows sick leave in a specific way, with specific evidence, they can legally request the information they are asking for. You have the legal right to refuse, but then they don't have to grant the request for sick leave.

However, the other issue is that you missed time. If they wish to consider the time unexcused then, based on your not giving them the medical proof, then it can legally be counted against you.