O'Hanlon v Commissioners for HM Revenue & Customs [2007] EWCA Civ 283; [2007] IRLR 404

In O'Hanlon v Commissioners for HM Revenue & Customs the Court of Appeal held that, when her entitlement to sick pay had been exhausted under HM Revenue & Customs' sick pay policy, the employer's failure to continue to pay Mrs O'Hanlon was neither a failure to make a reasonable adjustment nor disability-related discrimination. The Court of Appeal endorsed the EAT's findings that Mrs O'Hanlon had been substantially disadvantaged and treated less favourably by the sick pay policy but that reasonable adjustments had been made and that the employer's treatment of her had been justified.

The implications for sick pay policies will come as a relief to employers. A disabled employee will now find it very difficult to claim full pay during sick leave, once any contractual entitlement to full pay has been exhausted, unless, as in Nottinghamshire County Council v Meikle, the employer has caused the absence by failing to make reasonable adjustments which would have enabled the employee to remain at work.


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