Statutory Sick Pay

Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) is paid to employees who are unable to work because of illness. Statutory sick pay is paid at the same time and in the same way as you would pay wages for the same period.

The employer is responsible for paying Statutory sick pay to employees who meet certain qualifying conditions.

An employee must meet all the following conditions to get SSP:

  • They must be incapable for work for at least 4 days or more, This is a ‘Period of Incapacity to Work’ (PIW).

  • They must have at least one Qualifying Day in each week – these are days they normally work.

  • Their earnings must be at least as much as the lower earnings limit (LEL) for National Insurance contributions. This is currently £120 per week.

  • They must have notified you about their sickness within 7 days of the first day of sickness.

  • They must provide you with medical evidence of their sickness if you require it.

SSP isn’t payable straight away. The first 3 Qualifying Days of a PIW are called ‘Waiting Days’ when SSP isn’t payable.  SSP is payable from the first qualifying day after the 3 waiting days.

The weekly rate of Statutory sick pay from April 2020 is currently £95.85.

SSP is payable for a maximum of 28 weeks in a PIW or series of linked PIWs. There may be occasions where you are only to pay SSP for part of a week. If so you need to calculate a daily rate of SSP. The daily rate is the weekly rate divided by the Qualifying Days (working days) in that week. For SSP purposes the week always begins with a Sunday.

You must keep records of all dates of employees’ sickness lasting 4 or more days in a row and all payments of SSP and record any unpaid SSP with reasons. All records must be kept for 3 years.

The HMRC SSP calculator (click here) will help you work out if your employee is entitled to SSP and if so, provide a schedule of the payments you should make.

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