This week the coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme (SSPRS) was launched online on 26 May. This was one of the first government responses to the Coronavirus 19 pandemic, but the IT implementation has taken longer than planned.
What is the SSPRS?
The Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme will repay employers the SSP paid to current or former employees.
The repayment will cover up to 2 weeks starting from the first qualifying day of sickness, if an employee is unable to work because they either:
- have coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms
- cannot work because they are self-isolating because someone they live with has symptoms
- are shielding and have a letter from the NHS or a GP telling them to stay at home for at least 12 weeks
What period does it cover?
You can claim for periods of sickness starting on or after:
- 13 March 2020 – if your employee had coronavirus or the symptoms or is self-isolating because someone they live with has symptoms
- 16 April 2020 – if your employee was shielding because of coronavirus
No end date for the scheme has been announced.
How much can I claim?
The weekly rate was £94.25 before 6 April 2020 and is now £95.85. If you’re an employer who pays more than the weekly rate of SSP you can only claim up to the weekly rate paid.
What conditions do I have to meet?
You’re eligible to use the scheme if:
- you’re claiming for an employee who’s eligible for sick pay due to coronavirus
- you had a PAYE payroll scheme in operation before 28 February 2020
- you had fewer than 250 employees across all PAYE schemes on 28 February 2020
- you’re eligible to receive State Aid under the EU Commission Temporary Framework.
What documentation do I need to claim the relief?
Employees do not have to give you a doctor’s fit note for you to make a claim. However, you can ask them to give you one of the following:
- an isolation note from NHS 111 – if they are self-isolating and cannot work because of coronavirus
- the NHS or GP letter telling them to stay at home for at least 12 weeks because they’re at high risk of severe illness from coronavirus
How does this interact with my CJRS claim?
You can claim back from both the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) and the CSSPRS for the same employee but obviously not for the same period of time for that employee.
Are all my employees covered?
The scheme covers all types of employment contracts, including:
- full-time employees
- part-time employees
- employees on agency contracts
- employees on flexible or zero-hour contracts
- fixed term contracts (until the date their contract ends)
Are there any limits to what I can claim?
Your claim amount should not take you above the state aid limits under the EU Commission temporary framework. This is when combined with other aid received under the framework. The maximum level of state aid that a business may receive is €800,000. There is a lower maximum for agriculture at €100,000 and aquaculture and fisheries at €120,000.
In addition to SSPRS, the following COVID-19 relief measure are defined as state aid
SEISS – the Self-Employed Earnings Support Scheme
CBILS – the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
CLBILS – the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS)
BBLS – Bounce Back Loan Scheme
RHLGF – Retail, Hospitality & Leisure Grant Fund
The majority of COVID-19 specific R&D Schemes – consult us for further guidance
Note: CJRS is classified as not state aid
How do I claim
The online service you’ll use to reclaim Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) is available from 26 May 2020.
To use the online service you will need the Government Gateway user ID you got when you registered for PAYE Online. If you did not register online you will need to enrol for the PAYE Online service.
If we are authorised as your PAYE Online agent, we will be able to claim on your behalf.
SRC-Time are one of the South East’s leading accountancy firms in advising individuals and businesses in all aspects of their accounting and tax affairs and we are able to assist in any issue raised above.
Our expert team is available to provide you with advice and can be contacted on 01273 326 556 or you can drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or speak with an account manager to get any process started.