Sickness Certification

You do not require a doctor's sickness certificate for any illness lasting seven days or less. Your employer may however require you to complete a self-certification form (SC2) which is available from your employer or on the HMRC website.

Evidence that you are sick

If you are sick for more than seven days, your employer can ask you to give them some form of medical evidence to support payment of SSP (statutory sick pay).

Your employer can ask you to confirm that you've been ill.You can do this by filling in a form yourself when you return to work. This is called self-certification.

If you're sick and off work for more than seven days, your employer will probably ask for proof of your illness. Most employers ask for a fit note from your GP.

However, this will also depend on your employer's company policy on sick leave (or sickness absence). This policy should tell you how many days you can be off sick before you need to provide proof of illness or a fit note.

You could also provide evidence from someone who is not a medical practitioner, e.g. a dentist. Your employer will decide whether or not this evidence is acceptable. If your employer has any doubts, they may still ask for a medical certificate from your GP.

Once your sick note expires you are free to return to work without the need for a 'Fit to return' note or letter. You can also return to work before your sick note expires if you and your employer are happy for you to do so. 

Statement of Fitness for Work - ’Fit Note'

The 'fit note' was introduced on 6 April 2010. With your employer's support, the note will help you return to work sooner by providing more information about the effects of your illness or injury. Please note that this is note stating that you are fit to return as long as some amendments to your working schedule or role to facilitate this (such as phased return, amending your hours, changing your role or responsibilities in the short term)

We do NOT routinely supply notes stating that you are fit to return to work if no adjustments are required, as this is not legally required. If your employer is asking for a note or letter stating that you are fit to return to your job, then this will either have an attached fee, or may need to be sourced through an occupational health Doctor privately. 

For more information see the DirectGov website (where this information was sourced)

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