I would value some opinions on the options available to an organisation for handling the following difficult situation – I’d also like to understand any potential legal risks from the various options.

Situation: we have an employee who has been with the company for a number of years. Over the last 2-3 years the employee’s absence rate has increased drammatically.

Excuses have been weak, but for periods over 5 days GP sign off has been secured.

In my personal view, the individual has found a GP that they can manipulate, and is essentially getting away with almost unlimited paid leave. Unfortunately the terms and conditions provide for 28 weeks leave on full pay and 28 on reduced.

The individual works part time in an administrative role that is vital to the organisation.

In particular, I have the following questions:

1. In this situation, would it be possible to make the part time role redundant and replace with a full time role?

2. Is it possible to legally insist that the employee meets with a company appointed medic to determine that they are fit to continue in employement

As an organisation we do not feel that we can leave this situation unaddressed – absence rates in other corners of the organisation are already notably creeping up as word circulates that this employee is getting away with it.