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    12 Mar 2020 - News

    Statutory Sick Pay and Covid-19

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    The Government made announcements in the Budget regarding Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) changes in respect of the Covid 19 – the scheme for reclaiming SSP for those off  work with Covid 19 or self-isolating will start from the day on which the regulations come into force – confirmation of that date is awaited.

    Existing systems are not designed to allow employer refunds for SSP but the Government has said that it will be working with employers over the coming months to set up a repayment mechanism as soon as possible.

    The changes are:

    Temporarily allowing SSP to be paid from the first day of sickness absence (rather than the fourth day) for employees who have Covid-19 or have to self-isolate;

    SSP is extended to employees who are unable to work because they have been advised to self-isolate

    SSP is extended to employees caring for those within the same household who display Covid-19 symptoms and have been told to self-isolate

    There will be a temporary amendment to the medical evidence/fit note rules for the duration of the outbreak – those advised to self-isolate will be able to obtain a notification via 111 which they can use as evidence for absence from work

    The refund of SSP is within the following criteria:

    • The refund will be limited to two weeks per employee
    • Employees with fewer than 250 employees will be eligible
    • Employers will be able to reclaim for any employee who has claimed SSP (according to the new eligibility criteria as a result of Covid-19)
    • Employers should maintain records of staff absences but should not require employees to provide a GP fit note

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