Can an Employer Ask Why You Are Sick? Let’s See!

iEditorial Note: These blog posts represent the opinion of DoNotPay’s Writers, but each person’s situation and circumstances vary greatly. As a result, you should make sure to do your own independent research. Because everyone is unique, our self-help tools are never guaranteed to help with any specific situation. DoNotPay is not a law firm and is not licensed to practice law. DoNotPay provides a platform for legal information and self-help.

Can an Employer Ask Why You Are Sick? It Depends on These Criteria

While no one wants to go to work ill, some employees have to as they’re not entitled to paid sick leave.

How should you call in sick, and can an employer ask why you are sick? This article offers answers to these questions.

What To Say When Calling in Sick

You can be entitled to sick leave based on :

To prevent confusion and problems, you should get familiar with the above-listed before getting ill and calling it in.

Aside from following proper (internal) procedures, you also should prepare certain information for your superior when emailing them about being ill. While you shouldn’t go into the details and provide lengthy explanations, you might want to let your employer know:

  • If you have the flu, a cold, or COVID-19
  • How long you’ll be absent

Most employers won’t:

  1. Force you to work if you’re contagious as they don’t want to risk you spreading germs or viruses to co-workers
  2. Mind if you occasionally call in sick

Keep in mind that your superior might ask additional questions or require documentation to support your sick leave.

Can My Employer Ask Why I Am Sick?

While different states have different laws concerning sick leave, companies also have their own policies.

The table below answers some common questions about what specifics your employer might ask of you:

Can an Employer Ask Why You Are Taking a Sick Day? Specifics
Doctor’s noteYour company can require you to provide a doctor’s note to back up your sick leave, but they cannot ask for the details about your:
  • Diagnosis
  • Medical treatment
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)Your employer cannot ask any questions about ADA-related illnesses, i.e., they cannot inquire about your:
  • Disability
  • Prescription drugs
  • Genetic markers for diseases or health conditions
Unionized employeesIf you are an unionized employee, your employer has to follow the collective bargaining agreement (CBA) that might cover your:
  1. Sick leave
  2. Rights

Keep in mind that if your superiors have questions about the CBA, they might get in touch with the union representative

Calling in Sick for Work Laws

An employer needs to obey:

  1. State laws when it comes to your right to sick leave
  2. Internal company procedures if they’d like to get the specifics of your illness

Keep in mind that your employer can fire you for almost anything—especially if you often take days off or fake being ill—unless you qualify for the ADA, FMLA, or EPSLA and:

  • Are part of a union—In this case, you might have additional protection
  • Submit a valid sick leave request form to produce a rock-solid sick leave request

DoNotPay Generates Sick Leave Requests Automatically

It will take you a lot of time to go through your state, county, and city laws to know what kind of sick leave request to create.

Instead of wasting your energy and time trying to customize sick note templates to suit your needs, turn to DoNotPay. Our AI Consumer Champion:

  1. Is familiar with relevant legal requirements
  2. Can help you prepare an airtight sick leave request
  3. Will deliver your document to your employer or you—if you’d like to send it by yourself—in a matter of minutes

The process is straightforward as we don’t want you to be late calling in sick. and:

  1. Navigate to the Request Sick Leave product
  2. Enter the state your company is located in
  3. Provide some information about your company and let us know how long you’ll be absent from work
  4. Select whether you’d like us to deliver the request to you or your employer

Keep in mind that if your employer fires you for being sick, DoNotPay could help you sue them.

Check out the table below to get familiar with your state legal requirements:

CaliforniaArizonaPennsylvaniaNorth Carolina
New YorkMichiganFloridaVirginia
WashingtonColoradoVermontRhode Island
New JerseyWashington D.C.OhioGeorgia

How Can DoNotPay Tackle Tricky Tasks for You?

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