COVID-19: Statutory sick pay rebate scheme
Jun 10, 2020
As of 26 May 2020, employers can now make claims through the Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme. This new online service enables small and medium-sized employers to recover Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) payments they have made to their employees.
Employers are eligible if they have a PAYE payroll scheme that was created and started before 28 February 2020, and they had fewer than 250 employees before that date.
The repayment will cover up to 2 weeks of SSP and is payable if an employee is unable to work because they either:
- have coronavirus
- are self-isolating and unable to work from home
- are shielding because they have been advised that they are at high risk of severe illness from coronavirus
You can check on the Government’s website if your business can claim back Statutory Sick Pay paid to employees due to coronavirus (COVID-19).
Making a claim
If you are an employer with fewer than 250 employees, you can apply to HMRC to recover the costs of paying coronavirus-related SSP using the online service. This means that you will receive repayments at the relevant rate of SSP that you have paid to current or former employees for eligible periods of sickness starting on or after 13 March 2020.
To prepare to make your claim, you should keep records of all the SSP payments that you wish to claim from HMRC.
How much is SSP?
The current rate of SSP is £95.85 per week (before 5 April the rate was £94.25). Employers can choose to pay more than the statutory minimum if they wish. This is known as occupational or contractual sick pay. If you choose to pay more than the current rate of SSP in sick pay, you will only be able to reclaim the SSP rate.
Which employees are covered by statutory sick pay?
The scheme covers all types of employment contracts, including:
- full-time employees
- part-time employees
- employees on agency contracts
- employees on flexible or zero-hour contracts
Other SSP eligibility criteria apply. Connected companies and charities can also use the scheme if their total combined number of PAYE employees is fewer than 250 on or before 28 February 2020.
Employees do not have to provide a doctor’s fit note for their employer to make a claim under the scheme.
SSP and CJRS
Employers can furlough an employee who has been advised to shield in line with public health guidance, and who is unable to work from home, under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. Once furloughed, this employee is not eligible to receive SSP. If an employee has been advised to shield and they haven’t been furloughed, then the rebate will cover them for up to 2 weeks of sick pay from 16 April 2020.
If you need any assistance with making a claim for SSP please contact us. As PAYE tax agents we are authorised to submit SSP claims on our clients’ behalf.