How to reclaim coronavirus statutory sick pay

You may remember when details of the furlough scheme were first published the government made it clear that employers could recover the first 14 days SSP for anyone off with covid related illness. There was no detail of the procedure for reclaiming this payment.

Today they finally announced how this will happen.

Employers will be able to recover statutory sick payments made to staff during the coronavirus pandemic at the end of this month, the government has announced.

The coronavirus statutory sick pay rebate scheme, which was announced during the budget in March as part of a package of support measures for businesses affected by the crisis, is set to launch on 26 May. The scheme will allow employers with fewer than 250 employees to recover the costs of paying coronavirus-related statutory sick pay (SSP).
Employers will receive payments at the relevant rate of SSP, currently £95.85 per week, paid to current or former employees unable to work as a result of being ill with coronavirus, self-isolating and unable to work, or shielding because they’re at ‘high risk’ of severe illness from coronavirus. The repayment will cover up to two weeks of SSP for eligible periods of sickness starting on or after 13 March. Details of who is eligible and how to apply can be found on the GOV.UK website

Thérèse Coffey, secretary of state for the Department for Work and Pensions, said the UK government was committed to supporting small and medium-sized businesses through the pandemic. She added: “This rebate will put money back in the pockets of millions of employers, ensuring they can hit the ground running as the economy reopens.”
The coronavirus SSP rebate scheme will cover all types of employment contracts, including full-time and part-time employees, agency workers and those on flexible or zero-hours contracts.

The scheme guidance said employers could furlough staff who had been advised to shield in line with public health guidance and were consequently unable to work. But once furloughed, the individual should no longer receive SSP and instead receive furlough pay, the guidance stated.

Where an employee has been notified of the need to shield and has not been furloughed, employers can claim an SSP rebate for up to two weeks from 16 April.