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Tue June 02 2020

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Coronavirus sick pay rebate scheme opens

19 May A new online service launches on 26th May for small and medium sized employers to recover statutory sick pay (SSP) payments they have made to their employees.

The government’s coronavirus statutory sick pay rebate scheme was announced in the 11th March budget statement as part of a package of support measures for businesses affected by the Covid-19 outbreak.

This scheme will allow employers with fewer than 250 employees to apply to HM Revenue & Customs to recover the costs of paying coronavirus-related SSP.

Employers will be able to make their claims online service from 26th May. They can expect to receive repayments at the relevant rate of SSP that they have paid to current or former employees for eligible periods of sickness starting on or after 13th March 2020.

Secretary of state for the Department of Work & Pensions Therese Coffey said: “We are committed to supporting Britain’s small and medium businesses through this pandemic with a comprehensive package of support. This rebate will put money back in the pockets of millions of employers, ensuring they can hit the ground running as the economy re-opens.”

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Angela MacDonald, HMRC’s director general of customer services, said: “Our teams have worked hard to deliver this scheme for employers and their employees, to ensure they get the support they need. We want employers to be secure in the knowledge they will receive help as they care for their staff during this difficult period.”

Employers are eligible if they have a PAYE payroll scheme that was created and started before 28th February 2020 and they had fewer than 250 employees before the same date.

The repayment will cover up to two weeks of SSP, and is payable if an employee is unable to work because they:

  • have coronavirus; or
  • are self-isolating and unable to work from home; or
  • are shielding because they’ve been advised that they’re at high risk of severe illness from coronavirus.

To prepare to make their claim, employers should keep records of all the SSP payments that they wish to claim from HMRC. Further guidance is available on gov.uk.

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