Covering the cost of a doctor’s note

Requiring medical notes for which there is a fee
By Brian Kenny
|Canadian Employment Law Today|Last Updated: 11/27/2013

Question: If an employer requires a doctor’s note and the doctor charges for his notes, would this be a personal expense to the employee or does the employer have to pay for it?

Answer: In a unionized environment, whether or not this is a personal expense of the employee will be determined by the provisions of the collective agreement involved.

In many cases, the collective agreement will provide that the employer or the employee is solely responsible for the costs associated with obtaining a medical certificate. Where the collective agreement does not expressly provide for such compensation, the requirement cannot be inferred. This is particularly so if the collective agreement has specifically addressed other situations in which an employee will be reimbursed for costs incurred by the employee, but remains silent regarding reimbursement of costs associated with obtaining the medical certificate when required for a medical absence.