COVID-19: Re-introduction of Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme for SMEs
Employment law expert Cecily Donoghue provides an update on the re-introduction of much-needed support for some employers.
Re-introduction the Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme
The government has, today (14th January 2022), re-introduced the Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme which allows small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to recover up to two weeks’ Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for each employee who is off work due to COVID-19. The re-introduction of these schemes forms part of the support package announced by the Chancellor, Rishi Sunak MP, on 21 December 2021. It is important to note that claims must be made by 24th March 2022.
The snappily titled Statutory Sick Pay (Coronavirus) (Funding of Employers’ Liabilities) Regulations 2022 (SI.No.5/2022) have been laid before Parliament and come into force today, the 14th January 2022. A full copy of the regulations can be found here.
Who can use the scheme?
The regulations re-introduce the Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme across the United Kingdom, allowing:
- Employers with fewer than 250 employees (as of 30th November 2021).
- To recover up to two weeks’ Statutory Sick Pay (£192.70).
- For each employee who is off work suffering from COVID-19, or in self-isolation due to possible COVID-19 infection.
- The scheme applies to any days of incapacity on or after 21st December 2021, including where the period of incapacity started before that date.
- The scheme will end on 24th March 2022, which is the last date for claims to be submitted to HMRC.
A similar scheme had previously been introduced in May 2020 and ended in September 2021. The financial limits under the new scheme are unaffected by any payments previously claimed under the old scheme.