If an employee doesn’t turn up to work and gives no explanation the employee is likely to be in fundamental breach of the employment contract because they have failed to provide their labour as required by the contract of employment.
However, tribunals expect employers to act reasonably in such circumstances and so it is necessary to make an effort to find out whether there is a good reason for the absence rather than simply firing the employee. Get it wrong and it could be very costly!
In such cases an employee is effectively absent without leave so you could start by writing to the employee asking why they are not attending work. Give them a date by which their reply must be received and explain that they should either attend work or give a good reason for their absence otherwise you will treat it as a serious disciplinary matter and their job could be at risk.
Alternatively, you could treat their continued absence as a resignation but this is more risky.
ELE members: You will find the relevant letters and guides in the Absence Managers Toolkit on your webservice account.