In the case that employee is coming to work intoxicated or is consuming alcohol during the work time, this duty is violated. A lot of employers consider what should they do in such situations?
According to the article 17 of Law of 26 October 1982 of the upbringing sobriety and anti-alcoholism, the manager of workplace or person authorized by him are obligated do not let the employee work, if there is reasonable suspicion that the employee came to for intoxicated or consumes alcohol during his working time. What is important, the circumstances of this decision should be made known to the employee. The test of sobriety of that employee can be done on request of the manager, person authorized by him or the employee who is suspected. However, what results from the opinion of the Supreme Court (judgment of 11 December 2006, I PK 165/06), it is not necessary to determine the level of alcohol in the employee’s blood. The state of intoxication can be proved by any available evidences (testimony of witnesses, memos). In this matter, the test of the level of alcohol in blood is rather the employee’s instrument, who should want to prove his sobriety. It is confirmed by the judgment of the Supreme Court of 26 August 1999 (I PKN 241/99, OSNAPiUS 2000, No. 24, pos. 895).
What can the employer do in such situation?
- Mandatory, he cannot allow the employee to work.
- Gather evidences (to draw up the testimony of witnesses, preferably with their signatures, prepare memos).
- Make known the circumstances of this decision to the employee (verbally or in writing).
- Enable the employee to conduct the test of sobriety if he demands it (however in the case when the test doesn’t prove the level of alcohol in blood, the costs of such tests are by the employer).
- It is possible to terminate the employment contract without notice due.
- It is possible to punish the employee by warning/ reprimand or penalty payment. These punishments can be used only by previous hearing the employee. You have to also notify (in writing) the employee of used punishment with the information about the right to object and the opposition period.