Posted by: Lizz | 2010/07/01

My Domestic worker and cancer


my domestic worker was diagnosed with cancer in the uterus a few months ago, she was off for 6 weeks of which we paid her her full salary. She was back for 2 weeks and they found cancer in one of her kidneys which they also had to remove, she has now been off from work for another 3 weeks and I am not sure when she will be able to return to work. I am still paying her, her full salary. This is getting a bit ruff financial on us as I have to pay someone else to help me temporarily while she is not here.

Is there anything I can do so that I can have some financial relief and I don''t just dump her in to financial dispair. She will beworking a year by the middel of this month.

Thank you

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageLabour lawyer


Your domestic worker has already accessed all her sick leave. Any payment you make to her will be a gift and not a liability. It is suggest that you negotiate with her with regard to a termination package.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Purple | 2010/07/06

Only a pleasure. I hope that you manage to sort things out, and I hope that your domestic worker is getting good treatment through the state hospital and that she recovers. You must feel so sad for her.

Reply to Purple
Posted by: Lizz | 2010/07/06

Wow, thank you for taking the time to answer me so comprehensively.



Reply to Lizz
Posted by: Purple | 2010/07/02

Once all her sick leave and annual leave have been used up, she can apply for sick leave pay through UIF. They will pay for up to 6 weeks of pay for her.

You can download the forms off their web site (just take the spaces out) w w w dot labour dot gov dot za and follow the links to UIF and the various forms.

You can also phone them and they will talk you through the process. IF you haven''t been making your contributions you can pay everything outstanding for the time she''s worked for you, plus the penalties and they will then pay her.
She won''t get her full salary, but it will be something for this time.

You can also contact her doctor, with her permission (perhaps give her a letter to give to her doctor) where you ask when she is likely to be well enough to come back to work and whether she should do light work (no heavy lifting etc) for a period before returning to full duties.

You could also make an arrangement with her for time off where you perhaps pay her a partial salary (provided she has used up all her paid sick leave already). People who work 5 days per week get 30 days of sick leave per 3 year cycle.
(you can calculate for people who work fewer days by allocating 1 day sick leave per 17 days worked).

If she is unlikely to recover to the point of being able to work again, then, if she is old enough she could take early retirement, or if she isn''t, you could speak with her about how you can''t afford to go on paying her, and then end the relationship (dismiss her) based on incapacity (that she is too sick to do the job she was hired to do).
Pay her out for a months notice (so that she doesn''t need to come in and work during that month, which she can''t do) and then that''s that. It is very sad, but you aren''t obliged to support her forever.
You can however try to assist her with some groceries for her first month or with getting into a communicare home or something like that.

Reply to Purple | 1 comment (hide)
Posted by: Janet | 2015/06/11

I have a Domestic lady that now has advanced stage cancer she has been with me working full time for 5 years and part time for 7 years she is a pensioner since Jan 2015 she insists she wants to carry on working but cant do her work properly as you can imagine what do I do to get her to stay at home proberly for her last days

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