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HR-121 Fitness for Duty


Employees are expected to perform their work duties safely and competently. When an employee is having observable difficulties performing work duties and the issues (performance and/or behavioral) appear to demonstrate that the employee is not physically and/or mentally ready to perform the essential functions of their job, the University may refer the employee for a fitness for duty evaluation. This policy establishes procedures for the referral and implementation of the related recommendations. This policy applies to administrative, service and support employees.

HR Policy Provisions

  1. The determination to refer an employee for a fitness for duty evaluation should be made in consultation with a Human Resources representative.
    1. If appropriate based on the specific circumstances, an employee referred for a fitness for duty evaluation may be relieved of duties and placed on paid administrative leave pending completion of the evaluation.
    2. An employee’s failure to submit to a fitness for duty evaluation will be cause for disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
  2. A health care provider, selected by the University, will conduct the fitness for duty evaluation and return the findings to Human Resources.
    • The department is responsible for the cost of the fitness for duty evaluation.
  3. The University will make the final determination of an employee’s fitness for duty based on the evaluation and consideration of any other relevant information, factors or employment laws.
    1. If the evaluation supports a return to work or continued employment, it may be conditioned on the employee’s compliance with subsequent treatments, counseling, therapies or other requirements established by a healthcare provider.
    2. The University may terminate an employee based on a fitness for duty evaluation and other relevant information and factors which support a determination that the employee is not able to safely or competently perform their job. Progressive discipline is not required in these situations.
  4. Records of fitness for duty evaluations will be treated as confidential; this information can be shared only as necessary to make appropriate decisions regarding an employee’s fitness for duty.
  5. Procedure Information
    Records of fitness for duty are to be forwarded to the University, MU Health Care, or UM System Human Resources and are not to be retained in department offices (see Records Management Guide for details).

See Also

HR-407 Family and Medical Leave Act
HR-408 Leave of Absence

Date Created: 09/26/1997
Updated: 05/01/2014; 10/29/2020

Reviewed 2020-10-30