Is it illegal to fire an employee who is on medical leave?

UPDATED: Nov 17, 2017

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Is it illegal to fire an employee who is on medical leave?

Employee was fired because he was on medical leave. He was getting paid leave only because he had all his vacation/sick days built up over time. He received his last payment and was terminated. Is that legal?

Asked on November 17, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Mississippi


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Yes, an employee can be fired while out on medical leave. That is so long as it is due to reasons other than merely being on leave. In other words, if there were other reasons for their termination, then it is legal. So for example, if the employee's quality of work was insufficnent, then they could be fired while out on leave. That is unless doing so violates the terms of a union agreement or employment contract. Here is a link to an article that will explain further:

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