Are you ready for the Statutory Sick Pay scheme?

November 18, 2022

SFA Members: See the Statutory Sick Page section in HR & Advice here.

From 01 January 2023, employers will have a legal obligation to pay up to three days of paid sick leave to its employees. This new sick pay scheme will be rolled out as part of a four-year plan. Employees will have an entitlement to three days of paid sick leave in 2023, increasing to five days in 2024, seven days in 2025, and ten days in 2026.

The Sick Leave Act 2022, once commenced will entitle employees to:

  • Receive up to 70% of their normal wages while on sick leave (this is capped up to a maximum €110 per day).
  • A right to take a complaint to the WRC where they are not provided with a company sick pay scheme.

How is an employee entitled to paid sick leave under the scheme?

  • An employee must be working for their employer for at least 13 weeks.
  • They will also need to be certified by a GP as unfit to work.

What happens if an employer already has a sick pay scheme in place?
Section 9 of the new Statutory Sick Leave Act provides that if an employer already provides more favourable sick leave benefits to an employee, they will not be obliged to comply with the statutory sick pay rules. An employer will have to demonstrate that any discretionary or pre-existing scheme is more favourable than that provided for in the legislation.

With just over one month to go until this scheme comes into effect. It’s important for employers to prepare for its implementation:

  • Introduce a sick pay policy if none exists.
  • Review existing sick pay policies, company handbooks, and employment contracts to ensure they align with requirements set out in the Statutory Sick Leave Act.
  • Inform employees of their rights and obligations under the Statutory Sick Pay Scheme.
  • Ensure compliance throughout the implementation of this Legislation.

Statutory Sick Pay Scheme webinar recording:
The SFA recently recorded a ‘Statutory Sick Pay Scheme Update’ webinar, and you can view the recording here. Further information and more details, including a sample policy and FAQ document are available on the SFA website.

You can contact our HR Executive Fiona Mulligan on fiona.mulligan@sfa or ring 01 6051557 if you have any questions on the above.