THE ROLE OF EMPLOYERS IN THE PROTECTION OF EMPLOYEES’ RETIREMENT FUNDING PROVISION

Friday, June 15, 2012
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The Code of Good Practice on Key Aspects of Disability in the Workplace issued in terms of the Labour Relations Act requires employers (not funds) to “reasonably accommodate” the needs of people with disabilities. Reasonable accommodation includes, in that context, accommodation in relation to “the benefits and privileges of employment”. All that it says about fund membership is that health testing, including medical testing for admission to an employee benefit scheme should not be made a condition for the making of a job offer. The Code clearly indicates that “employee may be required to submit to medical examinations or tests before becoming members of employee benefit schemes that are offered within the employment relationship”. These refer, then, to tests conducted at the instance of the employer and not of the fund because, until a person has become a member of a fund, the fund has no power over him or her.

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