Understanding statutory sick pay

Statutory sick pay forms and record-keeping


COVID-19: Temporary change to SSP

In Northern Ireland, if the employee cannot work while self-isolating because of coronavirus they could get SSP for every day they are in isolation, from day one. They must self-isolate for at least four days to be eligible. This provision applies in Northern Ireland until 24 September 2022.

There is no longer a need for employers to keep records of statutory sick pay (SSP) that has been paid. However it is advisable to keep records of employee sickness absence.

Keeping records of sickness absence

You can choose how you keep records of your employees' sickness absence. HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) may need to see these records if there is a dispute over payment of SSP.

The employer must ensure that retention and storage of such records is compliant with both data protection and GDPR. See staff records: your data protection obligations.

SSP record sheet

You can use the record sheet for SSP form (SSP2) to record details of an employee's sickness absences. You don't have to use this form, but it will help you keep accurate records which will ensure that you pay the correct amount of SSP.

Self certification form

The employee's statement of sickness form or self certification form (SC2) is for employees to self-certify themselves as sick for the first seven days of sickness for SSP purposes. You can use your own self-certificate if you prefer.

Employee not entitlement to SSP

You must give the employee not entitled to SSP form (SSP1) to your employee to tell them why they cannot get SSP from you. Use and retain a copy of form SSP1 - or your own equivalent - when your employee has had the maximum amount of SSP and needs to claim Employment and Support Allowance. Fill in this form and send it to your employee if either:

  • they have been sick for four days in a row and are not entitled to SSP from you
  • their entitlement to SSP stops but they are still sick

Using HMRC's downloadable calculators

A set of HMRC's Basic PAYE Tools is available to download straight to your computer. In addition to calculators for SSP and other statutory payments, the tools include:

  • an employer database on which you can record your employees' details
  • a P11 calculator that will work out and record your employees' tax, National Insurance contributions and student loan deductions every pay day with a linked P32 Employment Payment record that works out what you need to pay HMRC
  • interactive forms such as P11D working sheets
  • a Learning Zone - including interactive learning material on SSP