If an employee has exhausted his or her entitlement to contractual sick pay, is the employee entitled to be paid if the absence is due to an instruction by the employer not to come to work to prevent the spread of pandemic flu?
If an employer advises a fit employee not to attend work in order to avoid the risk of that person contracting flu during a pandemic, the employee will be entitled to full pay unless the contract of employment states otherwise. Whether or not the employee has exhausted his or her entitlement to contractual sick pay is irrelevant as the employee is not sick, but able and willing to work. Fit employees could be asked to work from home, and in this case should also be paid in full. A sick employee should be paid in accordance with the company sickness policy. However, if he or she is instructed to stay at home once fit to return to work, the employer should put the employee on full pay unless the contract states otherwise.