sick leave

HOW DOES SICK LEAVE WORK IN SOUTH AFRICA: The Basic Guide

It is pertinent to bring yourself up to date with current labour laws, not only to perform better in your job, but to know your rights too. With that in mind, we have put together a basic guide to ‘sick leave’ for you.

sick leave

HOW DOES IT WORK?

As stated by the Department of Labour, ‘workers may take the number of days they would normally work in a 6-week period for sick leave on full pay in a 3 year period’. Employees can also insist on proof of illness (doctors’ note and so on) before paying a worker for sick leave.

APPLICATION:

The Basic Conditions of Employment Act applies to all employees and workers, but;

  • Members of the National Defence Force,
  • National Intelligence Agency,
  • South African Secret Service, or
  • Unpaid volunteers working for a charity.

See, Basic Conditions of Employment Act

APPLICATION FOR SICK LEAVE:

The provisions for sick leave do not apply to;

  • Workers who wrk less thatn 24 hours in a month,
  • Workers who receive compensation for an occupational injury or disease,
  • Leave over and above that provided for by the Act.

NUMBER OF SICK DAYS:

As stated by the Department of Labour, ‘workers may take the number of days they would normally work in a 6-week period for sick leave on full pay in a 3 year period’.

However, during the first 6 months of employment, workers are only entitled to one day of paid sick leave for every 26 days worked.

PROOF OF ILLNESS:

An employer may require a medical certificate before paying workers who are absent for more than 2 consecutive days, or who are absent often (more than twice in an 8-week period).

That is your basic guide to sick leave in South Africa. Be sure to read our article on Annual Leave, and how it works.