What constitutes an unauthorised absence?

An unauthorised absence is an absence during which an employee fails to attend work but where he or she does not have a statutory or contractual right, or the employer's permission, to be absent. Absences that are due to pre-booked annual leave, genuine and correctly reported sickness absence or family-related (eg maternity) leave, or that result from a statutory right to take time off (for example to look for work in a redundancy situation, or for antenatal care) do not constitute unauthorised absence. If an employee fails to attend work without a good reason, this will amount to unauthorised absence.