Employment Alert – Requirement to self-certify for SSP temporarily extended to 28 days

20 Dec 2021

The temporary Statutory Sick Pay (Medical Evidence) Regulations 2021 came into force on 17 December 2021, meaning that employers are not permitted to require medical evidence until after 28 days have passed.

What’s happening?

The Statutory Sick Pay (Medical Evidence) Regulations 2021 came into force on 17 December 2021.

Previously, employees could be required by their employer to provide medical evidence of incapacity after the first 7 days of sickness absence. These new regulations mean that employers are not permitted to require medical evidence until after 28 days have passed. This change is intended to increase GP capacity to support the booster vaccine programme.

Why is this important?

It is important to note that this is currently only a temporary measure. The new regulations will apply to sickness absences between 17 December 2021 and 26 January 2022.

The regulations will also apply to any absences commencing before 17 December 2021, but where the requirement to provide medical evidence under the usual rules has not yet arisen. So essentially absences from 10 December 2021 onwards.

The regulations will not apply to sickness absences commencing after 26 January 2022. However, they will continue to apply if a period of sickness absence commenced after 17 December 2021 and is ongoing at 26 January 2022.

What should you do?

  • Familiarise yourself with the new regulations and supporting guidance.
  • Revisit any sickness absences which commenced from 10 December 2021 onwards and ensure you are not requiring medical evidence until after 28 days have passed;
  • Inform relevant employees of the update and remind them of their obligations after 28 days have passed.
  • Put the end date of 26 January 2022 in your diary and (unless the regulations are extended) revert back to the usual rules on medical evidence from this date (save in relation to any ongoing absences which occurred before 26 January 2022, but after 17 December 2021).

Keep an eye on our future employment alerts for any updates to these rules.

If you need more information please contact us on 0800 2800 421 or email Employment.Alert@trethowans.com to find out how we can help.

Author

Andrew Crudge

Associate