Workplace Mental Health, Ill Employees, Absenteeism and RTW Management Masterclass

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28th Feb 2024



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Failing to manage ill and injured employees appropriately puts employers at risk of the whole spectrum of employment law. The complication of legal claims arising from the mismanagement of ill and injured employees, including adverse action, discrimination and unfair dismissals, would result in severe reputational and financial damages for both organisation and employers if incidents are not handled properly. Furthermore, a higher degree of sensitivity is mandatory when dealing with people with mental illness or long-term absence. The consolidation of medical information or the handling of suspected sick leave abuse have to be dealt with circumspection before organisations risk exposure when challenged under the law.

In order to manage effectively these complex workplace situations and ensure that both business needs and employees’ rights are met, it is essential for employers, HR and WHS managers to keep up-to-date with the latest legislative changes, new case law, and proven strategies for managing ill and injured employees. The Workplace Mental Health, Ill Employees, Absenteeism and RTW (Return-to-Work) Management Masterclass will enable you to gain a solid understanding of the relevant laws and procedures to manage ill employees, handle absenteeism and facilitate return-to-work in a fair and effective manger. It will also provide you with all the information and practical strategies you need to minimise risks and avoid hefty penalties

Learning Objectives

  • Expert advice on how new cases clarify various legal requirements
  • Essential updates of on employers’ legal obligations and compliance risks
  • Practical strategies to avoid liabilities associated with managing ill, injured or chronically absent employees, for instance: Managing long term absenteeism, dismissal for medical incapacity, performance management and gathering medical information
  • How to deal with suspected “sickies” and the investigation process
  • What you should do if the employee refuses to co-operate
  • Guided steps to design and implement successful return-to-work and rehabilitation processes
  • Redefine employers’ key responsibilities to manage ill and injured employees in a lawful manner
  • Analyse implications of governing legislation and avoid legal pitfalls e.g. discrimination, adverse action, unfair dismissal, privacy law
  • Leverage on recent case law and crucial decisions – and what these mean for employers
  • Proven strategies for managing long-term employee absence
  • Design and implement a fair and lawful investigation process when dealing with suspected ‘sickies’
  • Examine various considerations before terminating employment relationship on medical grounds
  • Measures to accommodate an employee’s injury during performance management processes
  • Understand how medical information should be gathered and used in a lawful manner
  • Best practice approaches and mediation techniques to handle an discrimination, adverse action or unfair dismissal claim
  • Review and reinforce successful return-to-work and rehabilitation processes

Who should attend?

Directors, Heads, Specialists and Senior Managers in Human Resources, Employee Relations or Industrial Relations who are responsible for:

  • Human Resources
  • Workplace/ Employment Relations
  • Industrial Relations
  • Workplace Health and Safety
  • Managing ill employees or absenteeism
  • Return-to-Work and Rehabilitation
  • People and Culture
  • Injury Management
  • Learning & Development
  • Remuneration, Compensation & Benefits
  • In-House Legal Counsel
  • Labour & Employment Law
  • Regulatory Affairs & Compliance
  • Union / Employee Advocacy Groups

Topics Covered

  •  Key Legal Responsibilities to Manage Ill and Injured Employees in Today’s HR Landscape
  •  Investigating Employers’ Psychological and Mental Health Responsibilities
  • Recent Cases and Key Court Decisions – Risks You Might Be Unaware Of
  • Dealing With Suspected “Sickies” and the Investigation Process
  • Practical Steps to Avoiding Liabilities Associated With Managing Ill and Injured Workers
  • Reasonable Adjustments and Return to Work Plans to Accommodate Mental illness in Victoria
  • Dealing with HR ‘grey areas’
  • Dealing with WorkSafe – the essentials

Event Video