Go Back   English Forum Switzerland > Help & tips > Family matters/health
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 28.11.2017, 22:09
Newbie
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Zurich
Posts: 3
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Big Dave has no particular reputation at present
Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

I'm a consultant working at an insurance company for a consultancy who employ me full time as an employee (i.e. not a contractor). The consultancy I work for told me that if I'm sick and take 1 or 2 days off work then I still get paid BUT I have to use my holidays to cover the 1 or 2 days. This would really eat into my 25 day allowance if I get the flu a few times, as usual unfortunately for me.

I checked my contract but don't see anything about this. Is this legal in Switzerland ? I've never heard of this before.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 28.11.2017, 22:11
roegner's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Zurich
Posts: 5,806
Groaned at 193 Times in 168 Posts
Thanked 6,161 Times in 3,117 Posts
roegner has a reputation beyond reputeroegner has a reputation beyond reputeroegner has a reputation beyond reputeroegner has a reputation beyond reputeroegner has a reputation beyond reputeroegner has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

BS, you have a right to sick days without taking holidays. You are on a Swiss contract?
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 28.11.2017, 22:30
curley's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: canton ZH
Posts: 4,676
Groaned at 51 Times in 46 Posts
Thanked 4,797 Times in 2,547 Posts
curley has a reputation beyond reputecurley has a reputation beyond reputecurley has a reputation beyond reputecurley has a reputation beyond reputecurley has a reputation beyond reputecurley has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

There are different rules about when you have to bring in a doctor's certificate. Most companies say after 3 days, one employer of mine once changed it to 5 days.
If your company says what you wrote, what you do is bring in one from day 1 and that's it.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank curley for this useful post:
  #4  
Old 28.11.2017, 23:19
ZuriRollt's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Zürich
Posts: 3,030
Groaned at 86 Times in 62 Posts
Thanked 3,521 Times in 1,549 Posts
ZuriRollt has a reputation beyond reputeZuriRollt has a reputation beyond reputeZuriRollt has a reputation beyond reputeZuriRollt has a reputation beyond reputeZuriRollt has a reputation beyond reputeZuriRollt has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
I'm a consultant working at an insurance company for a consultancy who employ me full time as an employee (i.e. not a contractor). The consultancy I work for told me that if I'm sick and take 1 or 2 days off work then I still get paid BUT I have to use my holidays to cover the 1 or 2 days. This would really eat into my 25 day allowance if I get the flu a few times, as usual unfortunately for me.

I checked my contract but don't see anything about this. Is this legal in Switzerland ? I've never heard of this before.
I would assume that this depends on where the consultancy you are full-time employed by is domiciled. This might irrelevant to where your current work is carried out i.e. whether it is subject to Swiss employment regulations.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 28.11.2017, 23:22
Tom1234's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Kanton Luzern
Posts: 11,233
Groaned at 295 Times in 232 Posts
Thanked 15,708 Times in 6,386 Posts
Tom1234 has a reputation beyond reputeTom1234 has a reputation beyond reputeTom1234 has a reputation beyond reputeTom1234 has a reputation beyond reputeTom1234 has a reputation beyond reputeTom1234 has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
if I get the flu a few times, as usual unfortunately for me.
Really? I think I've had the flu twice since I was a child and it was hell. If you have the flu then you're off work for at least a week.

Are you sure you're not getting the flu virus mixed up with a common cold? If so, there's really no reason why you shouldn't be in at work - it's not such a big deal.

Perhaps your boss is questioning the number of days you are taking off? Perhaps it's too many?
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Tom1234 for this useful post:
  #6  
Old 29.11.2017, 08:08
Newbie
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Zurich
Posts: 3
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Big Dave has no particular reputation at present
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Thanks for all the super rapid replies...

Yes, it's a Swiss company with a Swiss contract, I'm also domiciled in CH and have a valid work permit.

I've not been sick at all but only joined in the company in July so have not faced a Swiss winter while working for them yet !

I know about getting a doctor's certificate if it's more than a day or two off work, that's fair, as is using the special assurance for "long term" illness.

But this question is about the one or two days bad cold, fever, stomach problems, flu scenario. As a permanent employee and no mention of taking holiday days in my contract, can my employer force me to use up my holiday when I'm justifiably off sick for a day or two ?
The
Is there a Swiss work law about this on the internet ?
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 29.11.2017, 08:15
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: NE
Posts: 310
Groaned at 11 Times in 7 Posts
Thanked 298 Times in 153 Posts
ch2013 has made some interesting contributions
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

They must pay you for sick days, see here
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 29.11.2017, 08:34
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Zurich
Posts: 10,259
Groaned at 584 Times in 442 Posts
Thanked 13,745 Times in 5,347 Posts
Richdog has a reputation beyond reputeRichdog has a reputation beyond reputeRichdog has a reputation beyond reputeRichdog has a reputation beyond reputeRichdog has a reputation beyond reputeRichdog has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
Really? I think I've had the flu twice since I was a child and it was hell. If you have the flu then you're off work for at least a week.

Are you sure you're not getting the flu virus mixed up with a common cold? If so, there's really no reason why you shouldn't be in at work - it's not such a big deal.

Perhaps your boss is questioning the number of days you are taking off? Perhaps it's too many?
As you say he is probably mistaking flu for a bad common cold. Most people do.

However, considering a cold is infectious, the last thing he (or anyone else) should do as a responsible adult is be at work risking and risk spreading it to others and their families. It's just bad advice.

Much better to be at home working via VPN or similar if possible.
Reply With Quote
The following 3 users would like to thank Richdog for this useful post:
  #9  
Old 29.11.2017, 10:28
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Ostschweiz
Posts: 4,903
Groaned at 151 Times in 126 Posts
Thanked 6,266 Times in 3,210 Posts
Urs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Check your contract, it's not too uncommon that the first two days off on sick leave aren't paid. Consequentially if you want those first days paid you have to accept that they count as holidays.
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Urs Max for this useful post:
  #10  
Old 29.11.2017, 10:38
PaddyG's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Pensier, Fribourg
Posts: 8,867
Groaned at 112 Times in 96 Posts
Thanked 15,777 Times in 5,560 Posts
PaddyG has a reputation beyond reputePaddyG has a reputation beyond reputePaddyG has a reputation beyond reputePaddyG has a reputation beyond reputePaddyG has a reputation beyond reputePaddyG has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
They must pay you for sick days, see here
I think this is the relevant quote from that link:

"Employers are required to continue paying employees their full wages for a certain period during illness. According to the Code of Obligations (CO), the minimum duration is three weeks during the first year of service"
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank PaddyG for this useful post:
  #11  
Old 29.11.2017, 10:45
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Ostschweiz
Posts: 4,903
Groaned at 151 Times in 126 Posts
Thanked 6,266 Times in 3,210 Posts
Urs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
I think this is the relevant quote from that link:

"Employers are required to continue paying employees their full wages for a certain period during illness. According to the Code of Obligations (CO), the minimum duration is three weeks during the first year of service"
This requirement may be deviated from if the "package" is at least equivalent for the employee. For instance, having a Taggeldversicherung that pays up to 720 days (usually 80% of the normal salary) is considered to actually be better for the employee, hence allows the introduction of (up to three I believe) so-called "Karenztage", apparently two in OP's case.

I think "paying" for the Karenztage with holidays is unlawful. But because both parties are Ok with it nobody will complain thus that's how it will be done, provided that's what the two agree upon.

SECO (page not available in English):
"Die dem Arbeitgeber vom Gesetz auferlegte Lohnfortzahlungspflicht im Krankheitsfall ist dann abgegolten, wenn die Versicherungslösung mindestens gleichwertig ist. Nach der Gerichtspraxis sind vertragliche Abmachungen zulässig, wonach der Arbeitgeber während einigen wenigen Karenztagen keinen Lohn zahlen muss (je nach Gericht 1 - 3 Karenztage)."
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Urs Max for this useful post:
  #12  
Old 29.11.2017, 12:17
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Zurich
Posts: 3,928
Groaned at 116 Times in 74 Posts
Thanked 5,850 Times in 2,071 Posts
Kittster has a reputation beyond reputeKittster has a reputation beyond reputeKittster has a reputation beyond reputeKittster has a reputation beyond reputeKittster has a reputation beyond reputeKittster has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
Really? I think I've had the flu twice since I was a child and it was hell. If you have the flu then you're off work for at least a week.

Are you sure you're not getting the flu virus mixed up with a common cold? If so, there's really no reason why you shouldn't be in at work - it's not such a big deal.

Perhaps your boss is questioning the number of days you are taking off? Perhaps it's too many?
I have to disagree with a cold not being such a big deal as a rule, there are some really nasty ones that can leave you feeling horrendous for a few days. Please also consider the implications of you going to work sick and passing your bugs about. We regularly observe that one person comes in sick, then has to go home because they are too unwell, followed by a number of other employees then becoming ill with the same thing. The whole "heroic dragging oneself in but being more miserable than productive" thing is very overrated and not fair to your co-workers.

And finally, if you have anyone in the office with a compromised immune system, they will a) certainly catch your "no big deal cold" and b) be much sicker than you were because their bodies are just not as good at coping with illness.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Kittster for this useful post:
  #13  
Old 29.11.2017, 14:21
Forum Veteran
 
Join Date: Mar 2017
Location: Nyon
Posts: 692
Groaned at 12 Times in 11 Posts
Thanked 686 Times in 341 Posts
Rachel Moore has an excellent reputationRachel Moore has an excellent reputationRachel Moore has an excellent reputationRachel Moore has an excellent reputation
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
Check your contract, it's not too uncommon that the first two days off on sick leave aren't paid. Consequentially if you want those first days paid you have to accept that they count as holidays.
Really?? I thought under Swiss law an employer has to pay their employee sick days of at 100% (obviously with a doctor's line) up to a certain amount of time from the start of the sick period. Over and above that time the employee will still receive a % of their salary up to another designated time.


I worked for a Swiss financial company in Geneva a few years back. 1 employee went off sick, the illness ended up lasting a year, all backed by doctors' and hospital documentation. The company, after 6 months, tried to fire him in order to avoid paying him his salary for the next 6+ months which was I believe 70% of his original salary amount. Employer took them to court for unfair dismissal, which he won.


My question is this, under Swiss working laws, is an employer allowed to change the 3 day sick rule, or force them to use their holidays as unpaid so as to recoup sick days paid?
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 29.11.2017, 14:48
Tom1234's Avatar
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Kanton Luzern
Posts: 11,233
Groaned at 295 Times in 232 Posts
Thanked 15,708 Times in 6,386 Posts
Tom1234 has a reputation beyond reputeTom1234 has a reputation beyond reputeTom1234 has a reputation beyond reputeTom1234 has a reputation beyond reputeTom1234 has a reputation beyond reputeTom1234 has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
I have to disagree with a cold not being such a big deal as a rule, there are some really nasty ones that can leave you feeling horrendous for a few days. Please also consider the implications of you going to work sick and passing your bugs about. We regularly observe that one person comes in sick, then has to go home because they are too unwell, followed by a number of other employees then becoming ill with the same thing. The whole "heroic dragging oneself in but being more miserable than productive" thing is very overrated and not fair to your co-workers.

And finally, if you have anyone in the office with a compromised immune system, they will a) certainly catch your "no big deal cold" and b) be much sicker than you were because their bodies are just not as good at coping with illness.
That's fine for a bad cold but the OP was saying he gets flu a few times which simply can't be true. A bad cold does not last for one day.

So many people find the slightest excuse not to go to work it would seem.

Of course I'm not talking about people with a suppressed immune systems but these people tend to know how to look after themselves and can't really expect everyone in their office, on the train and on the bus to cater for them.


Here's a tip: wash your hands more and don't use your smart phone when on public transport. (you may have to think about that one).
Reply With Quote
This user would like to thank Tom1234 for this useful post:
  #15  
Old 29.11.2017, 14:51
Junior Member
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Geneva
Posts: 39
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 10 Times in 6 Posts
fargone has earned some respectfargone has earned some respect
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
...
I think "paying" for the Karenztage with holidays is unlawful. But because both parties are Ok with it nobody will complain thus that's how it will be done, provided that's what the two agree upon....
Agreed. Since there is nothing specifically mentioned in the Swiss employment law, it seems to be one of those grey areas that is agreed between two parties. The OP has to check his contract to see if this clause exists.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 29.11.2017, 16:47
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Ostschweiz
Posts: 4,903
Groaned at 151 Times in 126 Posts
Thanked 6,266 Times in 3,210 Posts
Urs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
Really?? I thought under Swiss law an employer has to pay their employee sick days of at 100% (obviously with a doctor's line) up to a certain amount of time from the start of the sick period. Over and above that time the employee will still receive a % of their salary up to another designated time.
[...]
My question is this, under Swiss working laws, is an employer allowed to [...snipsnip...] force them to use their holidays as unpaid so as to recoup sick days paid?
That one's easy hence the snipping. No he can't.

However, extended periods of illness (or absence from the job, rather) can result in a proportionate reduction of your holiday days due. Say you're absent for two months, i.e. 1/6 of a year, then the employer can reduce your holidays by 1/6. AFAIK the employer is free to use that option or not.

Quote:
Really?? I thought under Swiss law an employer has to pay their employee sick days of at 100% (obviously with a doctor's line) up to a certain amount of time from the start of the sick period. Over and above that time the employee will still receive a % of their salary up to another designated time.
The legal minimum, i.e. in the absence of a Taggeldversicherung, is
- during the first three months no salary is due while the employee is absent due to illness
- for the remainder of the first year three weeks are to be paid
- after that there's no clear legal requirement, can't be bothered to look it up. Code of obligations §324a says "thereafter the salary for appropriately longer periods depending on the duration of the employment relationship and the particular circumstances."

However, it's common to provide a Taggeldversicherung, which typically pays for about 500 days during up to 720 calendar days 80% of the salary (80% of two annual salaries during two calendar years)(some seem to pay 100% but I think that's unusual).
Quote:
View Post
I worked for a Swiss financial company in Geneva a few years back. 1 employee went off sick, the illness ended up lasting a year, all backed by doctors' and hospital documentation. The company, after 6 months, tried to fire him in order to avoid paying him his salary for the next 6+ months which was I believe 70% of his original salary amount. Employer took them to court for unfair dismissal, which he won.
See above, duration of the employment relationship. Additional aspects may play a role, including your colleagues' age, marital status, him having children, etc.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Urs Max for this useful post:
  #17  
Old 29.11.2017, 16:52
Spinal's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: Zurich
Posts: 362
Groaned at 3 Times in 2 Posts
Thanked 249 Times in 128 Posts
Spinal is considered knowledgeableSpinal is considered knowledgeableSpinal is considered knowledgeable
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
Really? I think I've had the flu twice since I was a child and it was hell. If you have the flu then you're off work for at least a week.

Are you sure you're not getting the flu virus mixed up with a common cold? If so, there's really no reason why you shouldn't be in at work - it's not such a big deal.

Perhaps your boss is questioning the number of days you are taking off? Perhaps it's too many?
I've had to send a few people home when they've come in with a cold/flu. As a general rule in my team:
- if it's infectious, please stay at home.
- if it affects your ability to work, please stay at home.

There's no point in having the entire team feeling ill because one person "worked through" their cold/flu. Whether you take a sick day or decide to work from home is your call - I trust my team to use their common sense.
Reply With Quote
The following 2 users would like to thank Spinal for this useful post:
  #18  
Old 29.11.2017, 17:03
Forum Legend
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Ostschweiz
Posts: 4,903
Groaned at 151 Times in 126 Posts
Thanked 6,266 Times in 3,210 Posts
Urs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond reputeUrs Max has a reputation beyond repute
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Quote:
View Post
Agreed. Since there is nothing specifically mentioned in the Swiss employment law, it seems to be one of those grey areas that is agreed between two parties. The OP has to check his contract to see if this clause exists.
That's got nothing to do at all with grey area, it's a consquence of a nonexistant Big Brother. It's a simple fact that you can do a lot of unlawful or illegal stuff that's not prosecuted let alone punished just as long as the victim (contract partner in this case) agrees and doesn't report you.
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 29.11.2017, 17:14
Newbie 1st class
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Zürich
Posts: 13
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 13 Times in 7 Posts
jazh is considered knowledgeablejazh is considered knowledgeablejazh is considered knowledgeable
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

I think that you are in a bit of tough situation, because there might be some question as to what exactly the law is that applies here.

It would be really nice if there was some way to quickly (and relatively inexpensively) get some professional advice as to what applies... and you are in luck, there is .

You can join the union UNIA and they have an official contact center to answer exactly this type of question.

https://www.unia.ch/de/mitglieder-se...tzen/beratung/
and in english: https://www.unia.swiss/our-members/why-unia/

UNIA membership isn't so expensive (https://www.unia.swiss/our-members/c...-cancellation/), but comes with a bunch of perks and it might be really nice to talk to a professional and get this settled once and for all. Also, the nice thing about finding out your rights from UNIA is that they'll most likely tell you exactly what you need to do to enforce them.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 29.11.2017, 18:44
Newbie
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: Zurich
Posts: 3
Groaned at 0 Times in 0 Posts
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Big Dave has no particular reputation at present
Re: Forced to use holiday days when off sick ?

Thank you everyone for the lively debate around my question.

I think the point that someone mentioned about no paid sick leave during the first 3 month trial period is interesting. I would not have considered this period as affecting illness and entitlements at all. Imagine you're hired in January. The stress of a new job and any colds/flu in your team could easily lead to a day or two in bed or on the sofa.

Where did the 3 month rule come from ?
Reply With Quote
Reply




Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Holiday or Time Off entitlement when doing exams? eairicbloodaxe Employment 36 02.09.2016 12:52
Forced holiday days? Konuku Employment 7 02.09.2014 16:36
Holiday days off Fael841 Employment 19 08.05.2013 10:18
Pregnant written off sick 50% and being forced to take my leave before the birth Delly Employment 2 03.03.2011 12:00
Laid off/made redundant but still have 25 days holiday alfred13 Employment 50 08.12.2009 01:13


All times are GMT +2. The time now is 07:21.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
LinkBacks Enabled by vBSEO 3.1.0