Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme

Support provided by HMRC

What does this involve?

If you are a small- or medium-sized business, you may be entitled to reclaim the costs of Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for sickness absence due to Covid-19.

The repayment will cover up to 2 weeks SSP starting from the first qualifying day of sickness, if an employee is unable to work because they:

  • have coronavirus symptoms
  • are self-isolating because someone they live with has symptoms
  • are self-isolating because they’ve been notified by the NHS or public health bodies that they’ve come into contact with someone with coronavirus
  • have been advised by letter to shield because they’re clinically extremely vulnerable and at very high risk of severe illness from coronavirus
  • have been notified by the NHS to self-isolate before surgery for up to 14 days

Employees are not eligible for SSP if they are self-isolating after returning to the UK, unless they also fit one of the previous criteria.

Am I eligible?

If you are an employer, you can reclaim up to two weeks of Statutory Sick Pay if:

  • you have already paid your employee’s sick pay
  • you’re claiming for an employee who’s eligible for sick pay due to coronavirus
  • you have a PAYE payroll scheme that was created and started on or before 28 February 2020
  • you had fewer than 250 employees on 28 February 2020 across all your PAYE payroll schemes

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
  • fixed-term contracts (until the date their contract ends)

You can make a claim for SSP paid due to coronavirus to employees who have been transferred to you under the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006 (TUPE) if you had:

  • a PAYE scheme that was created and started on or before 28 February 2020
  • fewer than 250 employees (including TUPE transferred employees) across all PAYE payroll schemes on 28 February 2020

If you did not have a PAYE scheme that was created on or before 28 February 2020, but the previous employer did, you can make a claim if they had fewer than 250 employees across all their PAYE schemes on that date. As the new employer, you can only make claims for SSP that you have paid. A claim cannot include SSP paid by the previous employer.

You can claim back from both the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and the Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme for the same employee but not for the same period of time.

Connected companies and charities can also use the scheme if their total combined number of PAYE employees was fewer than 250 on 28 February 2020.

Visit the UK Government website to read full details of eligibility.

What does this cost?

This is a free service.

Who is this for?

The scheme is for small or medium-sized businesses in the UK.

How long does this take?

Once your claim has been approved, funds are normally paid into your bank account within six working days. Do not contact HMRC unless it has been more than 10 working days since you have made your claim and you have not received it or been contacted within that time.

Important information

You can make more than one claim per employee, but you cannot claim for more than two weeks in total.

You can claim from the first qualifying day your employee is off work if the period of sickness started on or after:

13 March 2020 – if your employee had coronavirus or the symptoms or is self-isolating because someone they live with has symptoms
16 April 2020 – if your employee was shielding because of coronavirus
28 May 2020 – if your employee has been notified by the NHS or public health bodies that they’ve come into contact with someone with coronavirus
26 August 2020 – if your employee has been notified by the NHS to self-isolate before surgery

Next steps

Visit the UK Government website for more information and to make a claim online.

Support provided by HMRC

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