New legislation, which came into effect on 1 January 2023, aims to improve the rights of employees who currently do not receive sick pay from their employer and/or are not entitled to illness benefit from the Department of Social Protection. The Sick Leave Act requires employers to provide employees with up to three days statutory sick pay in 2023, rising to ten days per annum by 2026.
To be eligible, employees must have worked for the employer for a minimum of 13 weeks and must obtain a medical certificate. Employees who require additional sick leave after the statutory sick pay period expires may qualify for illness benefit from the Department of Social Protection if they have paid the necessary PRSI contributions.
Impact on Employers
Under the new legislation, the minimum standard of statutory sick pay that employers must provide is set at 70% of the employee’s wage, subject to a daily maximum threshold of €110. The Act does not prevent employers from offering more attractive sick pay benefits.
Employers who do not already provide paid sick leave will need to budget for the additional payroll costs of complying with the new legislation while those who do provide paid sick leave should check how their existing employee contracts may be affected.
As is always the case when managing people, employers need to ensure that they keep accurate sick leave records which they can rely on in the event of a Workplace Relations Commission investigation. These records should include the employee’s service history, statutory sick leave dates and payments made.
If you require further information about statutory sick pay or have questions about how the new rules will affect your business, help is available from our HR & Payroll Services team.
Our HR & Payroll Services team are on-hand to ensure you meet your employer obligations. Find out more about our services and how they can benefit your business.