Partner Dan Kaplan was interviewed on the Legal Talk Network’s Legal Talk Today podcast, “COVID Fakers!” about what actions an employer can take to deal with an employee who may be faking COVID symptoms or exposure to get out of work.
Kaplan, co-chair of the firm’s Labor & Employment Practice, was invited to appear on the program in response to a post he wrote on Foley’s Labor & Employment Law Perspectives blog, “Help! We Think Our Employee Is Lying About COVID-19 Exposure or Symptoms.”
Kaplan said an employee who repeatedly reports possible exposure to COVID-19 without actually testing positive for the virus or who does so on days corresponding with weekends or company-paid holidays is a telltale sign the employee may be lying.
In such a case, the employer could require the employee to sign an attestation form stating that his or her claim is true, hire an investigator to investigate the employee’s claim, or require the employee to take a COVID-19 test and share the results. “These are all steps an employer can take to quote unquote smoke out a faker,” he said.
In any event, Kaplan said an employer can take an “adverse employment action” ranging from suspension to termination against any employee the employer has a “legitimately held belief” is not being truthful.
Listen to the full interview here.