What could happen to you if you fake a sick note?

What could happen to you if you fake a sick note?

Employees who submit fraudulent sick notes can face fair dismissals if found guilty, as a recent Labour Appeal Court case proved.

Doctor writing sick note stock image
Poike / iStock

There’s been an increase in medical certificate abuse in South Africa, with a number of cases making their way to the labour courts. 

Not only does forging a sick note amount to dishonesty, but it also constitutes serious misconduct and fraud, allowing companies to fairly dismiss those found guilty.

BusinessTech reports that legal experts at Baker McKenzie, Johan Botes and JJ van der Walt, revealed that a case of said sick leave abuse made its way to the Labour Appeal Court. 

The court case in question’s judgment was handed down earlier this month and looked at evidence of employees who received pay for leave days using fraudulent medical certificates.

After an investigation, it was discovered that said employees had not visited the medical facilities recorded in the medical certificates. In addition, the signatures on the certificates did not include an initial or surname, while the certificate itself did not boast a practice number.

According to Botes and Van der Walt, employees run the risk of losing their jobs if they hand over fraudulent medical certificates or lie about being ill. These employees will not receive any sympathy from the Labour Court, they said: “Employees who are dismissed for dishonesty related to purported sickness should expect no sympathy from the employment tribunal or Labour Court.”

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