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Statutory Sick Pay: How does it work?

Statutory Sick Pay

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It would be great if we all had perfect health and were never ill, but unfortunately, at some points in our lives we get sick and as a result, can’t attend work. For everyone who is classed as an employee, earns more than £109 a week (before tax) and has been ill for 4 consecutive days, you are entitled to claim statutory sick pay at £86.70 for up to 28 weeks. Statutory Sick Pay is designed to provide a little piece of mind in times of illness and ensure that illness doesn’t place anyone in the position of financial hardship or place undue pressure to return to work even though you are not full fit.

How do you claim Statutory Sick Pay?

In order to claim Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) you need to tell your employer you are ill as soon as possible and if your sickness lasts longer than 7 days, you may be asked to provide evidence of your sickness, such as a doctors note. You can then be paid for the days you are ill and can’t work, after day 3 of sickness (your ‘waiting days’) and it will be paid to you in your salary as normal. Your employer may also have an occupational scheme which may entitle you to full or partial salary for a period of time, but it can’t be less than the Statutory Sick Pay amount.

Statutory Sick Pay benefits

Even if you are a temporary, contract or agency worker, you will still be entitled to SSP, but you are only entitled to pay for the days you would normally work. So if for example you fall ill on a Monday, you would have Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday as your 3 waiting days and would then receive SSP from Thursday. If you don’t work Fridays normally, you wouldn’t get SSP for the Friday if you are still ill by then.  If you delay telling your employer you are sick then they aren’t required to pay you until the day you have notified them, so it is worth contacting then as soon as you become ill and aren’t able to work. To claim SSP, you just need to inform your employer of your sickness or provide a sick or ‘fit’ note if you’re sick for more than 7 days, your employer will sort out the rest .

When are you not entitled to claim?

There are occasions when you will not be able to claim SSP, such as if you have had 3 or more years  of ‘linked periods’ of sickness where you have taken 4 or more days of sickness within 8 weeks of each other. If you are receiving Statutory Maternity Pay or have already received the maximum 28 weeks of SSP, you are also not entitled to claim. If you don’t qualify for SSP you should ask your employers for an SSP1 form which you can use to apply for Employment and Support Allowance.

If your employers have decided you aren’t entitled to SSP or they have calculated it incorrectly, you should speak to them to get an explanation or ask them to check their calculations. If you are still unhappy with their decision, you can phone Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) on 0845 302 1479 for further advice.





About Rebecca Robinson

About Rebecca Robinson

After spending the last 8 years juggling life as a mum of two, wife and working full time as a Project Manager for a global telecommunications company, Rebecca Robinson made the decision to follow her love of writing and took the plunge; turning her passion into a full time career. Since becoming a full time writer, Rebecca has worked with various media and copy-writing companies and with the ability to make any topic relevant and interesting to the reader, now contributes to The Working Parent on articles ranging from credit cards to teenage relationships. Ever the optimist, Rebecca's dreams for the future include a house in the country filled with children, dogs and horses in the field!

Website: Rebecca Robinson

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