Consequences of prolonged medical leave

Hello good people,

Need to ask some of you for advice…

Has anyone ever dealt with - or knows first-hand the dynamics of - managing insurance, employer, income, eventually even RAV, etc. when medical issues would cause prolonged absence from the workforce?

You can PM me if sensitive of course, thank you in advance!

Hi Lowyield,

I work in the field so i might help you. Can you please share some details of your situation?

  • Work-Contract
  • What type of medical issues
  • Are you working right now? If not, since when?
  • Salaryrange
  • etc.

I’m also wondering about this, thanks for asking.

It is a huge topic, do you have any specific questions ? (genuinely trying to be helpful)

A few, thanks for pitching in :slight_smile:

I’ll start with the privacy aspect which is perhaps the one where I have most doubts:
What information and how much information about your medical condition is shared?
With the employer, for example. But also with your health insurance, the employer allowance insurance, does the RAV have details if you get laid off, etc.

How is an employee protected against discrimination, in case the information is not private (mostly applies vs. the employer, I guess)?

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Maybe it’s time to ask your legal insurance these questions?

That’s a fair observation @Dr.PI, although prevention is better than the cure, I’m not sure if they deal in hypotheticals?

EDIT: meaning, I am not sure where to find this information but I hope it doesn’t require a lawyer, which would rather be the case if discrimination already occurred.

If there is a medical certificate I don’t think the employer is allowed to query what the medical condition is. However in every case I have been aware of they have a good idea. If it is something physical like cancer usually the employee feels ok to disclose it to the line manager or HR. If it is a mental health issue like stress / burn-out /depression, if the absence is prolonged I’m afraid it might be assumed (not saying that is how it should be, just how it works in practise)

First of all if you’re officially sick your current employer can’t lay you off for upto 180 days (see art. 336c para. 1 lit. b Code of Obligations). If the sickness is something permanent (e.g. chronic depression, loss of a leg) one might even end up getting disability payments (IV). If the medical details are ultimately shared with the RAV or previous/future employer I don’t know.

Legal consultation is a very reasonable step from my point of view, so I would definitely do it.


If things are getting serious (regarding health and/or employment), i’d recommend consulting respective professionals…

Just as you would not rely on medical diagnoses from random people of the internet, you should handle their “legal advise” with care…

It is usually imprecise at best:

(->check art. 336c para. 1 lit. b Code of Obligations).

In other cases it might even be blantantly wrong.

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Thanks all so far

Sometimes, or at least that is my experience. And confidentiality in all matters of human life is of course difficult to achieve.
Most importantly they want to know when and how will the employee be able to return / resume working, and whether he should be replaced (in both cases the sooner the better).
While duration is often a telltale, there may be instances in which one’s diagnosis is better kept private (e.g. stigmatized diseases, complicated abortion, obvious causes leading up to the illness itself, etc.) - especially for individuals in certain positions where it may affect their ability to relation with others.

Thanks for editing per @JLaw’s feedback, this is actually also in the employment contract oftentimes. The Krankentaggeld regulates the allowance and, if existing, may cover beyond this period.

It is indeed, I’ll pursue that avenue if needed, thanks.

Golden words, and most of us are also professionals in our respective fields, so we appreciate expertise.
The people of the internet however have a certain practical wisdom (and experience) that is useful to get to know in which direction start looking.
In fact I was hoping on first-hand experiences or PMs, and some members did such in a helpful way.

I think it is fruitful to continue this public discourse as well.


Could you share what you’ve learnt from
PMs? I don’t mean on a personal level but rather info about the topic of that thread as if it was in a PM the rest of us can’t see it although it would be valuable info.

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