Statutory Sick Pay

What is it for?

If you are not able to work because you are ill and normally earn more than £123 per week on average, even if you have a zero hour contract, you may be able to apply for Statutory Sick Pay (SSP).

SSP is paid at £109.40 per week. 

Statutory Sick Pay is normally paid after your third day of being unfit to work (so payments begin on your 4th day of continuous sickness). 

Statutory Sick Pay will normally be paid for up to 28 weeks (although this may be shorter if you have linked periods of sickness). After that you may be entitled to apply for Employment Support Allowance or Universal Credit.

If you are claiming Statutory Sick Pay and pay rent, or have children to support, you may also be entitled to claim Universal Credit.

Statutory Sick Pay is paid by your employer. If you employer operates a contractual sick pay scheme, you may get more than £109.40, but you cannot get less. 

Repeated Illness after Return to Work

If you return to work and are then off sick again within 8 weeks, you may not have to wait the 3 days before you can claim Statutory Sick Pay.

When won’t you get Statutory Sick Pay?

You won’t get SSP if you have been off sick less than 4 days, unless it is linked to another period of sickness when you did receive SSP.

You won’t get SSP if you have been receiving it for more than 28 weeks (but you may be entitled to Employment Support Allowance or Universal Credit).

You also wont get SSP if you are in receipt of Statutory Maternity Pay.

Statutory Sick Pay will also stop if you have continuous linked periods that last more than 3 years.


You cannot get Statutory Sick Pay if you are self-employed, but you may be able to apply for Universal Credit.

If you are in doubt you should complete a full benefit check, by following the link below.

Income Tax and National Insurance Contribution

Statutory Sick Pay is subject to Tax and National Insurance contributions. These will be deducted by your employer before you are paid.

When SSP ends

When your Statutory Sick Pay is coming to an end your employer will provide you with a SSP1 Form. You normally receive this at week 23 of your sickness, or within 7 days of your SSP ending, if it ends unexpectedly; or if you are not entitled to it, within 7 days of you going off sick.

You can use your SSP1 form to support your claim for Universal Credit or Employment Support Allowance.