When the requirement for sick leave is known to the employee in advance of his/her absence, the employee shall request authorization for sick leave at such time, in the manner hereinafter specified.

In all other instances the employee shall notify his/her supervisor as promptly as possible by telephone or other means.

Before an employee may be paid for the use of accrued sick leave he/she shall complete and submit to his/her department head a request stating the dates and hours of absence, and such other information as is necessary for the request to be evaluated.

If an employee does not return to work prior to the preparation of the payroll, other arrangements may be made with the approval of the department head and the Controller.

The sick leave requestshall be treated confidentially .

The department head may require a physician’s statement from an employee who applies for sick leave. The County agrees to accept doctors notes from an employee, regardless of the employee’s health care provider, as documentation of an employee absence.

The department head may make whatever investigation into the circumstances of an employee’s request for sick leave that appears warranted before taking action on the request.

Employees who are absent from work because of illness or injury shall not be disciplined because they are unable to provide a physician’s certificate when said document has not been requested prior to the employee’s return to work.

An employee who has exhausted his/her accrued sick leave balance may use other accrued leaves (vacation, comp time, holiday credits), in lieu of sick leave which meets the criteria specified in Section 19, unless such employee has been documented by management for attendance problems within the last four (4) months, in which case such other leaves may only be used for pre-scheduled and pre-approved medical and dental appointments. The use of such leave in lieu of sick leave is subject to all other provisions of Section 19.