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What is Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)?

If you are an employee and are unwell, you may not be able to attend work for a period of time. In addition to any contractual entitlements, you may be entitled to Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) if your employer does not pay your usual salary to you for any such periods. Many people are confused about SSP and whether they are entitled to claim, but it is relatively easy to get to grips with.

What is it?

SSP is a payment made by employers paid to employees who are too sick to work because of illness. It has to money payments and cannot be substituted for other kinds of payments such as goods/gifts.  The payment is usually made where the employment contract between the employee and employer states that the employee is not eligible for normal pay during sick periods. There are certain qualifying conditions that need to be met by each employee before the SSP is paid. These criteria include:

  • You earnings must be more than the Lower Earnings Limit for National Insurance Contributions (which is currently £107 per week)
  • The days you get paid SSP must be qualifying days – these are the days that you would normally work
  • You must be an employee and must have done work under the employment contract prior to the sick leave
  • You have to notify the employer of sickness within a previously agreed time limit or within seven days
  • You need to provide evidence of incapacity i.e. a sick note issued by your doctor
  • Your sickness has to be at least 4 days in a row which also includes non-working days

How much can I get and for how long?

The current rate for SSP is £85.85 a week and must be paid by your employer for up to a maximum of 28 weeks. Your employer will start paying SSP if your sickness is more than 3 consecutive days in a row. Anything less than this will mean you are ineligible for SSP.  The only exception to the less than 3 day rule is if you have already been paid SSP within the last 8 weeks which will mean you can be eligible for SSP in these 3 days. SSP payments will be stopped on the day that you are finally fit and return to work. It will also stop if the maximum 28 weeks of SSP have been used up by the employee.

If you are still unsure about your entitlements with SSP, then please feel free to contact our team on 020 8429 9245 or email info@wisteria.co.uk where we will be able to answer your questions.