What are my responsibilities as an Employer if an Employee catches COVID-19

The chances of you finding yourself with an Employee who tests positive for Covid-19 have now dramatically increased. The purpose of this update is to help you be prepared if you face this situation.

As with all of the guidance with coronavirus, we need to remind you that these are unprecedented times, and it is unclear as to how employment law will be applied in these exceptional circumstances.

The information that follows has been compiled with input from government websites, ACAS and HMRC (the only official resources that we follow, these are the institutions who will be relied upon in any litigation.

 

 

What should an Employer do if someone at work is suspected of having coronavirus?

 

Your Employee should not come into your workplace if they:

 

  • Have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms or have tested positive for coronavirus; OR
  • Are told to self-isolate (stay at home) by a government test and trace service, because they have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive; OR
  • Need to self-isolate because someone in their household has symptoms or has tested positive; OR
  • Need to self-isolate because they’ve returned to the UK after a holiday or business travel.

 

If someone cannot work because they have to self-isolate, they must tell you as soon as possible, or face a fine of £50. They can also be fined from £1,000 up to a maximum of £10,000 for not self-isolating.

If someone is told to self-isolate, they should work from home if that is possible.

 

What if they let you know during the working day?

 

If they are already at work, they should:

  • Inform you immediately and go home;
  • Avoid touching anything, and wash their hands regularly;
  • Cough or sneeze into a tissue and put it in a bin, or if they do not have tissues, cough and sneeze into the crook of their ‘elbow’;
  • Use a separate bathroom from others, if possible; and
  • Avoid using public transport to travel home, if possible.

 

As an Employer you can be fined up to £10,000 if you knowingly ask or encourage a worker or Employee who needs to self-isolate to come to the workplace.

 

What if someone with coronavirus comes to work?

 

If someone with coronavirus comes to work, the workplace does not necessarily have to close, but you should follow cleaning advice. See advice for cleaning workplaces on GOV.UK.

 

 

What happens if an Employee with Coronavirus has had contact with others in your workplace?

 

If an Employee or worker has had contact at work with someone who has symptoms or has tested positive for coronavirus, they will not usually need to self-isolate.

 

If someone cannot work because they have to self-isolate, they must tell you as soon as possible, or face a fine of £50. They can also be fined from £1,000 up to a maximum of £10,000 for not self-isolating.

If someone is told to self-isolate, they should work from home if that is possible.

 

If they followed social distancing rules, they should only need to self-isolate if they:

 

They should speak to you if they are unsure or have any concerns about whether they need to self-isolate.

 

How can you support Employees who do need to self-isolate?

 

If someone does need to self-isolate, it is good practice to:

 

 

 

How long should Employees Self-Isolate?

 

To find out how long someone must self-isolate for, see:

 

 

Where can you get guidance about Track and Trace?

 

For workplace advice about the government test and trace services, for UK, Scotland and Wales see:

 

 

 

How we can help you further?

 

If you need any assistance or having any queries regarding COVID-19 or your Employees, you can visit our COVID-19 Toolkit on our website here: https://hrandyou.co.uk/covid-19-toolkit/

We are here to help you to provide you up to date advice and guidance, you can call us on 01254 467156 or email us @ [email protected].

 

 

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