Changes To Sick Pay & Sick Leave

The New Statutory Sick Pay System

Changes To Sick Pay & Sick Leave

A statutory sick pay scheme has come into effect in Ireland.

In the past, you had no legal right to be paid while you were on sick leave from work. The new scheme aims to bring Ireland in line with other European countries that have mandatory paid sick leave for workers in place. The move by the government is in response to the recognition during the pandemic
for the need for greater security for lower-income workers.

What is statutory sick pay?

Since 1 January 2023, you have a right to 3 days’ sick pay per year. This is called statutory sick pay (that means the legal minimum). Sick pay is paid by your employer at 70% of your
normal pay up to a maximum of €110 a day. As an employee, you must be working at least 13 weeks with your employer before you can get statutory sick pay. Employers are allowed to have a more generous sick pay scheme, but they cannot give you less than the statutory amount. To be payable the sick leave needs to be certified by a Medical Practitioner and the
certificate has to be submitted to the Employer.

The entitlement to paid sick leave is being phased in over 4 years:
● 2023 – 3 days covered
● 2024 – 5 days covered
● 2025 – 7 days covered
● 2026 – 10 days covered

The eventual 10 days, or two working weeks, of sick pay per year will be in addition to other leave entitlements including annual leave, parental and maternity leave as well as public
holidays. The staggered roll-out has been decided to avoid placing an excessive financial burden on employers. They have more time to plan and budget for extra costs.

How will it affect employers?

The new regulation will cost your business money if you do not have a sick leave policy already in place. Indirect expenses may also include administrative costs associated with creating, implementing, and maintaining records for each employee.

For the employer, the benefits of this scheme would include reducing employee turnover and promoting a safer work environment where those who suffer injury or infectious illnesses take time to recover fully before returning to work. Hopefully this will lead to reduced productivity loss overall.

Employers must keep proper records of each employee. The records must be maintained for four years and include information in relation to each employee who availed of sick leave, as well as the following:

● The employee’s period of employment
● The dates of statutory sick leave in respect of each employee
● The rate of statutory sick leave payment in relation to each employee.

Statutory sick pay will benefit your employees and your business overall. For this to be rolled out efficiently among your business, you may need to adjust management and payroll procedures to comply with the new regulations, Contact us below today to see how we can help your business needs.

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