Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) in Ireland


Starting 1st January 2023, Ireland has introduced a mandatory sick pay for employees, known as the Statutory Sick Pay (SSP). This guide outlines everything employers and employees need to know about this new legal requirement.

What is Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)?

SSP is the legally mandated minimum sick pay that employers must provide. This entitlement will gradually increase over four years:

  • 2023: 3 days covered
  • 2024: 5 days covered
  • 2025: 7 days covered
  • 2026: 10 days covered

Sick leave can be taken either consecutively or sporadically throughout the calendar year, which runs from 1st January to 31st December.

The rules on the SSP are set out in the Sick Leave Act 2022

Payment Details

Employees are entitled to receive 70% of their normal weekly pay as sick pay, capped at a maximum of €110 per day.

Eligibility for Statutory Sick Pay

To qualify for Statutory Sick Pay, an individual must:

  • Be an employee.
  • Have completed at least 13 continuous weeks of employment with their current employer.
  • Obtain a GP’s certification confirming their inability to work.

This applies to all employees, including those on probation, interns, apprentices, and agency workers.

Medical Certification Requirement. A medical certificate is required from the first day of sick leave. There are no ‘waiting days’; employees are eligible for SSP from the first day they are off sick.

Part-time employees are eligible for sick pay only if they were scheduled to work on the day they fall sick. Leaving work partway through a day counts as a full day of sick leave.

Calculating Sick Leave Pay. Sick pay is calculated based on the employee’s normal daily rate, which includes regular bonuses or allowances but excludes overtime or commission. For those with variable weekly earnings, the pay is averaged over the 13 weeks preceding the sick leave. The maximum daily cap for sick pay is €110.

Extended Sick Leave If an employee is sick for more than three days, they may be eligible for Illness Benefit from the Department of Social Protection, provided they have sufficient PRSI contributions.

Key Takeaways

  • The Sick Leave Act 2022 governs the rules of SSP.
  • SSP is a step towards better employee welfare and is mandatory for all employers.
  • Employers should review their current sick pay policies to ensure compliance with the new statutory requirements.