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Scheme to claim back Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) paid to employees due to coronavirus (COVID-19) re-introduced

Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton

The Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) Rebate Scheme has been reintroduced for small businesses. Employers with fewer than 250 employees will be able to claim up to two weeks’ SSP per employee for COVID-related sickness absences occurring from 21 December 2021.

The reintroduction of the Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme (SSPRS) was announced as part of a £1bn support package for businesses impacted by the Omicron variant of COVID-19.

Employers will be eligible for this support if they:

  • are UK-based;
  • employed fewer than 250 employees on 30 November 2021;
  • had a PAYE scheme at 30 November 2021; and
  • they have paid their employees’ COVID-related statutory sick pay (SSP).

If an employer made a claim for an employee under the previous scheme, they will be able to make a fresh claim for a new COVID-related absence for the same employee of up to two weeks. The claims portal remains live for the previous iteration of the scheme as employers have until 31 December 2021 to submit their claims for periods up to 30 September 2021.

Employers should wait until mid-January 2022 to submit claims for coronavirus-related SSP from 21 December 2021. It is expected that claims will only be possible once the requisite secondary legislation has been laid. As a reminder, employers must keep records of SSP that they have paid and want to claim back from HMRC.

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