Where an employee is absent from work for a substantial period of time through illness it is well established that employers must take proper steps to ascertain the true medical position and, once this has been done, to consult with the employee before deciding whether or not to dismiss. However, as the EAT has recently emphasised in International Sports Co Ltd v Thomson and Rolls-Royce Ltd v Walpole, these principles are inappropriate where the employee is frequently absent as a result of unconnected minor ailments.
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