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#1
Old 06-08-2011, 12:56 AM
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Is it wrong to use paid "sick days" as vacation days from work when not sick?

I recently started a shiny new corporate job, which incidentally is the first time I've been paid on salary and not by the hour (yay!). The company handbook allows for some mandated holidays (like Christmas, Labor Day, etc.), 10 vacation days/year, and 5 paid sick days which can not be accumulated from year to year. I happen to be of pretty sound constitution and rarely get sick - even when I do it's fairly minor and I tend to work anyway.

I feel like if I claim those sick days when I'm not actually sick it would be kind of "playing hookey" and would feel wrong, yet I'd also feel like they were wasted if I didn't use them. What is the typical rule of thumb here?
#2
Old 06-08-2011, 01:39 AM
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It's wrong to take a paid sick day if you're not sick. You made an agreement with the company, and if you break that agreement, your being dishonest, and in a sense, stealing.

But everybody does it.
#3
Old 06-08-2011, 01:52 AM
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I think it's wrong to take a sick day if you're not sick. That said, I think companies are a bit short-sighted in not allowing employees to roll over their sick leave to the following year. I've been a permanent employee in my present job for four years (casual before that, so no sick leave entitlements). I've taken no sick days in that time but if I needed an operation with a few weeks to recuperate, I'd have enough sick leave up my sleeve to see me through.

Although it's dishonest, I can see why employees take all their sick leave entitlements if they're not allowed to save them up for a later time when they might really need them.
#4
Old 06-08-2011, 02:38 AM
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I say use it or lose it. If you can't roll-over your sick days to next year then use them for days when you feel blah, feel like sleeping in, or have to do some errands. Who cares right? Does the company want a doctor's note from you if you take a sick day? If they don't then use every sick day you're allowed to.
#5
Old 06-08-2011, 02:43 AM
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Nothing wrong with not going to work with pay. The company gives me paid time off to not be at work as a benefit. I currently have 3 weeks of paid time off and by hell I'm using it all!

I think it also depends on the type of work you're in and how much you love your company. When I worked at the cabinet factory (a job that I really liked) if I took time off it would effect productivity and other people would have to work harder because of it. I would feel bad taking time off even when I was sick. Whereas now I loathe my current job with a passion and I do very very little in the way of actual work so I don't give a shit.

Last edited by EvilTOJ; 06-08-2011 at 02:43 AM.
#6
Old 06-08-2011, 02:49 AM
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Originally Posted by EvilTOJ View Post
Nothing wrong with not going to work with pay. The company gives me paid time off to not be at work as a benefit. I currently have 3 weeks of paid time off and by hell I'm using it all!

I think it also depends on the type of work you're in and how much you love your company. When I worked at the cabinet factory (a job that I really liked) if I took time off it would effect productivity and other people would have to work harder because of it. I would feel bad taking time off even when I was sick. Whereas now I loathe my current job with a passion and I do very very little in the way of actual work so I don't give a shit.
Doesn't honoring your agreements count for anything?
#7
Old 06-08-2011, 05:29 AM
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Of course. When I take time off, I expect to be paid for it. You seem to be stuck on the term "sick day", which implies some sort of lying or thievery on my part if I fake being sick. My current employer doesn't even call it sick time, it's all lumped under "Paid time off". That means I call work and say I'm not coming in and they say, OK see you tomorrow.
#8
Old 06-08-2011, 06:14 AM
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I used to work for a company that gave use 12 sick days per year, and you could roll them over year to year, up to a max of just over 100 days (can't remember exactly). So it was in your best interest to save them up, because if you got really sick or needed surgery or something it was basically like having short-term disability with 100% pay. But then if you were fired/laid off/quit, you did not get paid for the accumulated days.

When I worked there I only use a couple days a year and I had accumulated about 15 days halfway through the second year and I got quite sick (chronic illness) and had to use all of those days within a few months. If I hadn't had those days, I would have had to take unpaid sick days.


In general, I wouldn't feel comfortable using paid sick days as vacation if they can roll over. If the sick days don't roll over every year, I might use a couple for days when I'm a little sick and technically could come in, but you might as well stay home and recuperate better. Or do you have kids or a significant other? Can you use your sick days if you need to stay home and take care of them when they're sick? Or if you need to take a day off to take care of an aging/ill parent?

Last edited by Waenara; 06-08-2011 at 06:16 AM.
#9
Old 06-08-2011, 06:25 AM
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Originally Posted by EvilTOJ View Post
Of course. When I take time off, I expect to be paid for it. You seem to be stuck on the term "sick day", which implies some sort of lying or thievery on my part if I fake being sick. My current employer doesn't even call it sick time, it's all lumped under "Paid time off". That means I call work and say I'm not coming in and they say, OK see you tomorrow.
You don't have sick days. Some of us do, and the rules for my job allow sick time to be used for illness or medical appointments for a member of my household. If I call and claim one of those is true when it's not, I'm lying.
#10
Old 06-08-2011, 06:30 AM
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I don't even have sick days, I just have tracked personal time. If you start abusing it (and, fortunately or unfortunately, that's a term that's subject to interpretation) you will hear about it, but most of the time it won't be questioned. Heck, the company's own guidelines says it's for illness, emergencies, and appointments that can't be scheduled outside business hours.

As for "honoring your agreements", I would say that these days it is very much a one-way street. The company has no loyalty to you, just self-interest and that it is wise to both remember that and be willing to behave the same way.
#11
Old 06-08-2011, 06:49 AM
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Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
Doesn't honoring your agreements count for anything?
Yes you should always honor your agreements. Say hi to The Man for me.


The whole "sick day" vs "vacation day" seems sort of outdated to me. In my line of work, I am either "in the office" or I am "working from home". And since my boss stole all my staff and works from home a lot because he has a 2 hour commute, it's pretty much at my discretion.

The only time I take "paid time off" is when I am traveling and unreachable.
#12
Old 06-08-2011, 07:12 AM
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Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
But everybody does it.
I don't - and I never have. It's wrong.
#13
Old 06-08-2011, 07:20 AM
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I have always thought of it as taking a mental health day. I bet TriPolar has taken a few of those.
#14
Old 06-08-2011, 07:28 AM
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Mental Health day +1

Sometimes you just need a day off even though your are not physically ill. If the company allows you sick days then take one. just don't bitch when you DO get sick and don't have any left.
#15
Old 06-08-2011, 07:43 AM
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Originally Posted by Mangetout View Post
I don't - and I never have. It's wrong.
#16
Old 06-08-2011, 07:45 AM
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I have a very low threshold for "sick". If I have to do anything that involves my health, I feel fine taking a sick day. So if I have to pick up drugs at the pharmacy, I can take a sick day even if I could just go after work. Usually I come in anyway, even on days where I'm what a reasonable person would call "sick", but the point is that I could take the day if I wanted to.

But I think it should be clarified that sick/vacation/PTO days aren't about permission to not be at work. It's permission to get paid for not being at work. Those days are about money, not labor. They're therefore fungible. Take the days off now and if you should have some terrible injury, just take leave without pay. It all works out the same in the end.
#17
Old 06-08-2011, 07:47 AM
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It's not steeeeaaaling!1!! any more than when you go over and above your ordinary duties for the sake of the company then the company is steeeeaaaling!1!! from you.

One rule - don't lie to your employer or superiors. If the sick days are for when you are sick only, then don't take them unless you are sick. Act like you expect to be treated like an adult and you just might be.

Last edited by Isamu; 06-08-2011 at 07:48 AM.
#18
Old 06-08-2011, 07:53 AM
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If you will lie about the reason for you're taking time off, would you lie about a bigger problem at work (say a forgotten compliance filing)? If so, I wouldn't want you working for me.
#19
Old 06-08-2011, 08:06 AM
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The part about not being able to accumulate the hours is what complicates the issue. I only use sick leave if I'm sick or seeing a doctor or taking care of a sick kid. But then again, I accumulate sick leave year after year. Right now I could be out for 37 weeks if I had to. If I had to use it or lose it, I'd be tempted to use it. Whoever thought that that policy was a good idea needs a swift kick to the crotch.
#20
Old 06-08-2011, 08:10 AM
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I call it a mental health day, because we do need them. I work hard and never take a sick day during our busy season unless I am actually sick (in which case my boss practically throws me out of the office - she's a bit of a germaphobe).

In this job, thankfully, I have plenty of vacation and my sick days accumulate, so I don't take them, but I would feel no qualms if I really needed one. I'd probably explain, though.

And no, I don't lie about bigger problems at work. That's just stupid. If you're going to treat us like drones we're going to lie to your face. If the corporate culture understands that everyone needs time off, we'll relax a bit and you can punish the transgressors.
#21
Old 06-08-2011, 08:10 AM
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My company also gives sick days along with vacation days, and they expect us to take the sick days by the end of the year even if we're not sick. As weird as it sounds, they also encourage us to plan them if possible, like for appointments or mental health days. Is there a way to find out if your company has a similar stance on taking sick days?
#22
Old 06-08-2011, 08:21 AM
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Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
It's wrong to take a paid sick day if you're not sick.
Define "sick". Seriously. If I'm "sick" of working and take a day off, returning rejuvenated. . .
#23
Old 06-08-2011, 08:25 AM
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Originally Posted by Rigamarole View Post
I feel like if I claim those sick days when I'm not actually sick it would be kind of "playing hookey" and would feel wrong, yet I'd also feel like they were wasted if I didn't use them. What is the typical rule of thumb here?
I think it is usually within the bounds of ethics to use them to go to routine doctor/dentist/mental health appointments, or to stay home to care for a sick family member. My job has extremely strict and literal sick leave rules, and both of these are explicitly permitted uses of sick leave.

ETA: I have also worked at places that considered it "personal time" and did not require any justification for your absence. You could basically take a vacation under "personal time" as long as it wasn't 3 or more consecutive days. However, that is not the case at my present place of work. Any leave taken under "sick leave" must be documented (ie, a note that you were seen) and medical in nature.

Last edited by Hello Again; 06-08-2011 at 08:28 AM.
#24
Old 06-08-2011, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by elninost0rm View Post
x10,000,000.

Companies that differentiate between sick days and vacation days are full of shit. At my previous work places, there was simply paid time off, and you were free to use it due to illness, trip to the Bahamas, or the desire stay at home and watch paint dry. Companies that allot for sick time and personal time separately are trying to weasel you out of time off.
#25
Old 06-08-2011, 08:30 AM
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Originally Posted by Isamu View Post
It's not steeeeaaaling!1!! any more than when you go over and above your ordinary duties for the sake of the company then the company is steeeeaaaling!1!! from you.
I was once warned that I had taken all of my sick days and that any others I took would go unpaid. That's fine, but where is my additional pay for all of the nights and weekends that I worked, the exhaustion of which probably made me sick in the first place? They didn't have an answer for that.

I've worked at some places where yuo could take off so many sick days (like four), but you had to have a doctor's note for each one. Seriously? The commonly accepted cure for a cold is to stay in bed, not interrupt a busy doctor's day just so you can be told that you should have stayed in bed.
#26
Old 06-08-2011, 08:48 AM
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At all places I've worked, vacation time is basically part of your annual salary and if you leave the company with time accrued (most places I've been don't give it all to you at once, but you earn a little bit w/ each pay cycle) and when you leave the company you recieve the balance of your time cashed out.

Sick time, or optional, or personal days - are counted differently and are not cashed out when you leave.

So if you take a sick day when you're not sick, instead of a vacation day, you kind of are stealing from the company since you're not tapping into that vacation reserve. If I have 5 vaca days that would cash out at $1000, but then I take a sick day when I'm not sick, I still have that $1000 sitting there if I decide to quit (instead of $800 if I'd taken the day in the ethical day.

With all that said, though, I often take sick days when I'm not sick and just need a day off. As long as someone doesn't abuse the system by constantly calling out I consider it pretty low on the Unethical Meter.
#27
Old 06-08-2011, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by MeanOldLady View Post
Companies that differentiate between sick days and vacation days are full of shit. At my previous work places, there was simply paid time off, and you were free to use it due to illness, trip to the Bahamas, or the desire stay at home and watch paint dry. Companies that allot for sick time and personal time separately are trying to weasel you out of time off.
Eh. I kind of like having separate sick days and vacation days, as long as they can roll over to the next year.

If sick days and vacation all come out of one pot, then you inevitably end with coworkers who are jerkwads who come in when they're sick and make everyone else sick, because they've pre-planned to use all their days off for their vacation later in the year, and they didn't leave any days as a buffer in case they get sick or have an emergency, and heaven forbid they take an unpaid day off when they're very sick and contagious.
#28
Old 06-08-2011, 09:08 AM
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Originally Posted by MeanOldLady View Post
Companies that differentiate between sick days and vacation days are full of shit. At my previous work places, there was simply paid time off, and you were free to use it due to illness, trip to the Bahamas, or the desire stay at home and watch paint dry. Companies that allot for sick time and personal time separately are trying to weasel you out of time off.
I think that depends on the sort of job you have. Annual leave is something which is generally planned, so the employer knows that you'll be off for x number of days and can plan replacement staff accordingly. Sick leave is often phoned in on the actual day, which can make for headaches at the sharp end of the workload.

If I or one of my colleagues ring in sick, we have to be replaced or block beds. Telling patients that we're short staffed, so they'll just have to wait until the following day for their medications and treatment just isn't on. Lumping in sick leave with annual leave and having staff just randomly deciding to take a day off because they wanted to go to the beach would be a nightmare at my workplace.
#29
Old 06-08-2011, 09:12 AM
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If you don't take a mental health day here and there every once and a while, you'll burn yourself out. And I wouldn't want you working for me
#30
Old 06-08-2011, 09:21 AM
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Originally Posted by NurseCarmen View Post
If you don't take a mental health day here and there every once and a while, you'll burn yourself out. And I wouldn't want you working for me
Agree. Personally, other than when I was hospitalized with a gallbladder that needed removed, I've never taken a sick day when I was sick. Cold/flu/headache/hangover/whatever I go to work. That way I can go kayaking/hiking/etc with my "sick" days.
#31
Old 06-08-2011, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
Doesn't honoring your agreements count for anything?
Sure. And part of the agreement is: "You have X days off, per year, with pay, for "sick days"." Companies budget for paying "sick days" as part of their regular employee compensation package. If they thought they could get good employees without that part of the compensation package, they'd drop it. But if the company promises its employees sick days as part of their benefits, then it's not stealing if the employees take it. The details of what an employee needs in the way of healthcare is actually none of the company's business. If they try to come back and insist that the employee present a note or something, then the company is the one trying to weasel out of its agreements.
#32
Old 06-08-2011, 09:27 AM
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Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
Doesn't honoring your agreements count for anything?
It does...but I have trouble doing that for a company that would never do the same for me, or rather, if they wanted to get rid of me, would find any legal way to do it. I don't take sick days willy-nilly because my coworkers need me, and I enjoy my job, but that doesn't mean I am a slave to it. The company has no particular loyalty to me. I will honor my agreements as much as I can when it comes to them.
#33
Old 06-08-2011, 09:27 AM
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I have no problems using a sick day for an occasional mental health day, but I wouldn't expect people to use all their sick days just because they could. I'm expected to work extra hours, nights and weekends and that's accepted as part of the job. I'm compensated for that.

My current company doesn't have allotted sick days but previous companies have. I don't think it's a great idea but if that's what the company has chosen I wouldn't expect to use them as personal days. We had a few of those and I would use them for whatever I wanted. I'd only use a sick day as a personal day if I was really burnt out or had done a great deal of extra work. In most of those cases my boss has just told me to take a day so I didn't need to use sick days.
#34
Old 06-08-2011, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Waenara View Post
Eh. I kind of like having separate sick days and vacation days, as long as they can roll over to the next year.
Yep. Our sick days roll over too. I have something like 800 hours accrued. If I get a nasty flu or need surgery or something, I don't have to worry about burning vacation time for it.

We almost went to personal days, and it was universally and SOUNDLY defeted. Mostly because the first thing that would happen is all of our accumulated sick leave would get dumped.

And to the OP. I don't feel that I need to be really sick to use a day here or there. If I'm getting my job done and not missing deadlines, I take a sick day if I'm feeling a little off, didn't get good sleep or generaly don't think I can be very productive.
#35
Old 06-08-2011, 09:53 AM
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A few years ago, my organization switched from the old standard of vacation/personal/sick days to PTO. I'm surprised more companies haven't done so, as the old system is burdensome for both the employer and employee.

What used to happen in my organization under the old system, is staff would use up their vacation and personal days and have nothing left by November but sick days, so guess what happened? Half the staff called in sick in November and December, using up their remaining sick time, and putting undue stress on managers who had to deal with increased, unscheduled absenteeism during this period.

We realized that there was no point in segmenting time off into buckets, and consolidated all time off so each employee gets a bank of hours they can use any way they want. What do we care if they're taking the time for a personal reason, a vacation, or if they're under the weather?

Once we switched to the new system, we were immediately rewarded by far fewer employees calling in sick, and a precipitous drop-off in absenteeism in November and December.
#36
Old 06-08-2011, 09:56 AM
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Is it just me, or does sick leave (and all other types of leave) smack of not being actually treated as a salaried employee? If you are salaried, you are being paid to get something done, not to be there a certain number of hours, right? So if you can get all your work for the week done by Thursday afternoon, if you were really salaried, you could take Friday off, right?
#37
Old 06-08-2011, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by robert_columbia View Post
Is it just me, or does sick leave (and all other types of leave) smack of not being actually treated as a salaried employee? If you are salaried, you are being paid to get something done, not to be there a certain number of hours, right? So if you can get all your work for the week done by Thursday afternoon, if you were really salaried, you could take Friday off, right?
Wrong. Are you not in the US?
#38
Old 06-08-2011, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by robert_columbia View Post
Is it just me, or does sick leave (and all other types of leave) smack of not being actually treated as a salaried employee? If you are salaried, you are being paid to get something done, not to be there a certain number of hours, right? So if you can get all your work for the week done by Thursday afternoon, if you were really salaried, you could take Friday off, right?
Depends on your job and the type of work. Most executive types are expected to be there if the office is open to be available to oversee issues. If your work is the sort where you have assignments/ contracts, then that is certainly an option. It is worth nothing though that the majority of salaried employees, (at least at the lower end of the pay scale) usually get ass raped by the company when you compare it hourly. However, I can understand the appeal of knowing exactly how much you get compensated, and being able to depend on it every week. certainly makes budgeting easier.
#39
Old 06-08-2011, 10:06 AM
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Sick leave is a conditional benefit. It means that if you are not sick you do not qualify for the benefit.

It's like having handicapped parking for employees. It's a benefit for company employees but it applies only to disabled people.

I worked at one company where sick leave was defined as strictly sudden, non-planned illnesses. For instance, if I needed a gall bladder operation, I would not be allowed to use sick leave. Why? Because unless it was emergency surgery, I could plan for the surgery and should use my other time off.

If I went to the dentist for a check up, it's not sick leave. I should've scheduled the appointment for my day off.

I don't agree with this logic, but why is it done like this. Because it's cheaper for the company and looks good on the books.

What people often fail to realize is, is that vacation time is NOT a conditional benefit. It is earned. It must be paid for upon separation. (With a few exceptions if you handle the accounting right)

By making sick leave a conditional benefit, it doesn't show up as earned on the company books. In other words vacation time is earned so it's a liability and that is BAD for the company books.

Now this is a general rule, there are "ways" of using accounting to get around the rules, and it works for both employees and employers.

For example courts have ruled in Illinois, that if an employer accrues for sick time, it must be paid, even though it's not earned. In other states that ruling of the court doesn't apply.

I've always got my sick pay upon separation, simply by threatening to make a big deal of it. I simply say "I want my sick pay." They say, "No." I say, "Fine, I'm not gonna argue about this, this is why we have lawyers. You get a lawyer, I'll get a lawyer we'll let them fight it out. Of course I'll win and you'll wind up paying my court costs and getting in trouble with the labor dept."

Often times this threat is not accurate at all, but it has worked 100% of the time, as it's easier to pay someone off then fight them.

I know for some companies sick/vacation time is a huge issue. I recall when I first started working for Starwood Hotels back in the 90s. They had bought Westin and ITT Sheraton and they had three kept the benefits and rules for each company. So we had one set of rules for ex-Westin, one set for ex-Sheraton and one set for new Starwood.

They asked me to help them start combining the rules into one set. I found vacation/sick days to be costly. Some people had NEVER taken any time off and were holding it.

I found directors having accumulated four months paid time off. I found housekeepers with 1000 hours of paid time off due to them. These people had worked for decades and just took days off without pay.

It was a mess to clean that up and get everyone on the same page.
#40
Old 06-08-2011, 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Waenara View Post
Eh. I kind of like having separate sick days and vacation days, as long as they can roll over to the next year.

If sick days and vacation all come out of one pot, then you inevitably end with coworkers who are jerkwads who come in when they're sick and make everyone else sick, because they've pre-planned to use all their days off for their vacation later in the year, and they didn't leave any days as a buffer in case they get sick or have an emergency, and heaven forbid they take an unpaid day off when they're very sick and contagious.
Jerks will be jerks no matter how time off is divvied up, I say, but I could be wrong. It's happened.

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Originally Posted by jabiru View Post
I think that depends on the sort of job you have... If I or one of my colleagues ring in sick, we have to be replaced or block beds. Telling patients that we're short staffed, so they'll just have to wait until the following day for their medications and treatment just isn't on.
Fair enough, but nobody died if I didn't feel like coming in for my job at the bank or the insurance/securities brokerage firm, or whatever else office gigs I fall into.

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Originally Posted by Markxxx View Post
Often times this threat is not accurate at all, but it has worked 100% of the time, as it's easier to pay someone off then fight them.
How many times have you done this?
#41
Old 06-08-2011, 10:57 AM
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Originally Posted by Markxxx View Post
... If I went to the dentist for a check up, it's not sick leave. I should've scheduled the appointment for my day off....
I have yet to find a dentist who works Sundays.

"Should've" my lily-white ass (and almost lily-white teeth). OP, your mental health is as important as your bodily health (they're not really unrelated, after all) and also: enjoy your shiny new job!

Last edited by purplehorseshoe; 06-08-2011 at 10:58 AM. Reason: ooooooh ... shiny! ! !
#42
Old 06-08-2011, 11:06 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Lovely Montclair, NJ
Posts: 12,439
Quote:
Originally Posted by NurseCarmen View Post
If you don't take a mental health day here and there every once and a while, you'll burn yourself out. And I wouldn't want you working for me
My company gives me over 100 mental health days a year.
#43
Old 06-08-2011, 11:22 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: rhode island
Posts: 38,878
Quote:
Originally Posted by Merneith View Post
Sure. And part of the agreement is: "You have X days off, per year, with pay, for "sick days"." Companies budget for paying "sick days" as part of their regular employee compensation package. If they thought they could get good employees without that part of the compensation package, they'd drop it. But if the company promises its employees sick days as part of their benefits, then it's not stealing if the employees take it. The details of what an employee needs in the way of healthcare is actually none of the company's business. If they try to come back and insist that the employee present a note or something, then the company is the one trying to weasel out of its agreements.
Most companies spell out the policy for sick days, otherwise, their is no agreement. If the policy says sick days are for people who are actually ill and have a valid medical reason for not working, then you are stealing if you take a sick day when you are not sick. If your employer doesn't pay you when you are out sick, you can sue them, and they will lose, and may be subject to further action by the state. If you take a sick day when you are not sick, they could sue you, and they would win. Your excuses wouldn't work in court, and they don't change the ethics of the situation either. You agree to the terms when you take the job.

Disclaimer: When I was a young man, I took sick days when I wasn't sick. Since then I've mostly been self-employed and when employed by others it hasn't been an issue.

My conclusion: Employees and employers contribute to an 'everybody does it' environment. That doesn't make it right, but it certainly diminishes the level of 'wrongness' in the practice. If taking a sick day when you are not sick is the worst thing you've ever done, you qualify for sainthood.

Mangetout, 'everybody does it' doesn't mean every single person actually does it. Everybody knows that.
#44
Old 06-08-2011, 11:36 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Van Nuys, CA
Posts: 11,663
I like the way our office does it. We just have ETO, not separate vacation and sick time. (although we do have a separate bank of extended sick leave). I have something like 350 hours of ETO banked right now, I should get on using some before I hit the 500 hour cap.
#45
Old 06-08-2011, 11:55 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Bellona
Posts: 3,334
Before my last job switched to PTO from sick/vacation, I took the following tact:

Vacation time was for items that were planned ahead. This included vacations, scheduled non-medical appointments, and Fridays/Mondays off in order to get a long weekend. Sick time was for things I couldn't plan. Obviously, the most obvious use would be due to physical illness, but it also included things like, "my car just died on the interstate" and "I think that if I have to go in today, I am going to have a fucking nervous breakdown." It also included scheduled medical appointments, as per company policy.

Now, if you plan in advance to call in sick, I think that *is* a little dishonest. But a mental health day? Bah! You don't have to endeavor to use all of them, but using one or two for an unexpected day off is, IMHO, totally kosher.
#46
Old 06-08-2011, 11:55 AM
Charter Member
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Chicago-ish, IL
Posts: 10,480
Well, I get a whopping 2 weeks of vacation and 4 days of sick time a year, none of which rolls over; itís pretty easy to use up 4 days on routine medical appointments, even if you donít get sick. One routine physical one gyno appointment, 2 dental checkups, maybe another appointment with my ortho or somethingÖit adds up, and none of my doctors is anywhere near my office, and Iím not willing to give up any of them (Iíve had the same dental practice ever since I had teeth!).

Luckily, at least my office is pretty flexible about using sick time for other purposes, should we have any left by the end of the year. But suffice it to say that I donít use sick days if Iím not sick, because then I wonít have any left if I actually am sick. And good thing that we have short-term disability coverage.
#47
Old 06-08-2011, 12:33 PM
Charter Member
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Modesto, CA
Posts: 535
I'm allowed to use sick time for visits to the doctor, dentist, etc. I can also use up to half of it for when a family member is sick. Between those two things, and also staying home if I have a cold, I can always use up my sick time (4 days/year) without faking.
#48
Old 06-08-2011, 12:58 PM
Member
Join Date: May 2001
Location: England
Posts: 57,538
Quote:
Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
Mangetout, 'everybody does it' doesn't mean every single person actually does it. Everybody knows that.
It really does mean that. It might not be what you wanted to say, and I suppose I probably guessed you meant most or many people. No matter- what i posted is my sneer to the question.in this thread anyway.
#49
Old 06-08-2011, 12:58 PM
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Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 15,432
Quote:
Originally Posted by kayaker View Post
Define "sick". Seriously. If I'm "sick" of working and take a day off, returning rejuvenated. . .
I propose the dictionary definition, where #1 on the list for "sick" can of course refer to "nauseated" or "inclined or likely to vomit". I mean, I'm happy to take a sick day without drinking that much, but if folks insist I get well and truly sloshed before calling in -- drunk or hung over, take your pick -- then, uh, yay legalism, or something.
#50
Old 06-08-2011, 01:02 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 14,000
Its your time. It shouldn't matter to the company how you use it. Do you feel bad if you take a vacation day and stay home? Or have a paid holiday but don't celebrate it?

If you're off, it shouldn't matter why
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