From 13 March 2020, employees who:
Have isolated themselves to prevent infection or contamination with coronavirus (COVID-19), in accordance with the guidance published by Public Health England, NHS National Services Scotland, Public Health Wales or the Regional Agency for Public Health and Social Well-being effective on 16 March 2020; and are unable to work because they have self-isolated,
are deemed to be incapable of work and are therefore entitled to statutory sick pay (provided that they otherwise qualify).
This extension of the right to statutory sick pay is made by the Statutory Sick Pay (General) (Coronavirus Amendment) Regulations 2020 (SI 2020/287) and applies to 12 November 2020.
According to the Government’s Guidance for employers and businesses on coronavirus (COVID-19), employers should use their discretion in requiring medical evidence of sickness due to coronavirus. Where an employer does require such evidence, “those with symptoms of coronavirus can get an isolation note from NHS 111 online, and those who live with someone that has symptoms can get a note from the NHS website”.
Statutory sick pay will also be payable from day one (rather than day four) where an employee is unable to work due to coronavirus. The Government has introduced the Coronavirus Bill in Parliament, which is due to apply this measure retrospectively from 13 March 2020 (see Coronavirus support for employees, benefit claimants, and businesses).
The Government intends to make other adjustments to the statutory sick pay rules, in response to coronavirus (COVID-19)
If you’re looking for advice on this subject and want to know how the changes will impact your business, we can carry out an HR audit to identify if you have the correct contracts, policies, and procedures in place.
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