Currently employers are able to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay (“SSP”) from HMRC, where the total SSP paid in a month exceeds 13% of their Class 1 National Insurance Contributions for that month. This has been called the ‘Percentage Threshold Scheme’.
However, as part of the Government’s review of health at work, it seems that the scheme is to be abolished. A draft order has been laid before Parliament and this was approved by the House of Lords on 12 February 2014. The order is expected to take effect on 6 April 2014.
The Government has justified this move by saying that this will help fund the introduction of a new Health and Work Service. This service will offer voluntary medical assessments and treatment plans for employees who have been on sick leave for 4 weeks to help them get back to work. However, the service is not expected to be up and running until 2015. In the meantime, it seems there will be little help for employers, particularly smaller businesses which would have been more likely to reclaim SSP.
If you would like to talk through a situation you are dealing with, or if you need advice on any aspect of employment law, please contact any member of the Pure Employment Law team (01243 836840 or [email protected]).