When an employee has to take time off work for medical reasons, you can record this in Sage 50 Payroll. Your software then uses the information you enter and the current legislative rates to calculate their Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) entitlement. SSP is a legal requirement from HMRC so you must make sure you set this up correctly.

Sage 50 Payroll uses the employee’s last eight weeks earnings to calculate whether they qualify for SSP. If during that time they earned more than the current national insurance lower earnings limit, they qualify for SSP.

When you use the Recording Sickness option, if an employee doesn’t qualify for SSP, your software tells you this and briefly explains why.

The following detailed steps contain everything you need to help you set up and process SSP for your employee.

(For use with Sage 50 Payroll 2010 v16 and above)

Check Dates

  1. Check that you know when the employee was absent from work due to sickness, and if required, have relevant documentary evidence.
    Tip: For spells of sickness lasting less than seven days, you can accept self-certification verbally, by letter, form SC2 or your own self-certificate. Your company policy dictates how your employees must inform you of their incapacity for work. You can only ask for a doctor’s statement after the first seven days in a spell of sickness.
  2. Check the exact dates that you want to pay SSP up to in the current pay period.
    Tip: If you pay your employees in arrears, ensure the SSP dates are for the relevant pay period. For example, if your process date is 27 August and you are paying your employees for the week ending 21 August, ensure that you only enter SSP dates up to 21 August.
  3. From the navigation bar, click Payroll, from the Tasks pane, click Change Process Date, enter the required process date for your next pay period then click OK.

You have now successfully checked the dates for which you want to pay SSP to your employee and have set the process date for your next pay period.

Enter the dates and other required information and check the employee’s entitlement to SSP

  1. From the employee list, select the employee, from the navigation bar, click Employee then from the Tasks pane, click Recording Sickness.Tip: If a message appears advising that you have already entered sickness within this pay period, to record details for another period of sickness, click Yes. Alternatively, if you need to amend the existing period of sickness details, click No.
  2. In the Absence Details area, check or enter the following:
    First day of sickness Enter the date when the employee first became sick and unable to work, even if this is a non-working day. If this is a continuing period of sickness, the first day of sickness appears and you cannot amend this.Note: This information is compulsory. If this date box is clear, SSP does not calculate.
    Last day of sickness Enter the date that you want to pay SSP up to in the current pay period. If you pay your employees in arrears, enter the relevant date.Note: This information is compulsory. If this date box is clear, SSP does not calculate.
    Calculate Entitlement To check the employee’s entitlement and, if required, enter further SSP information, click Calculate Entitlement.Tip: If this option is not available, amend or re-enter the date in the Last day of sickness box.
    Withhold SSP payments If the employee told you they were sick at a time later than you had agreed, you can withhold payment of SSP by the amount of time they were late in notifying you.

    To delay payment of SSP, select this check box.

    Welfare to work A new employee may qualify for return to work benefits for up to 104 weeks. If they are receiving these benefits and have given you a letter of confirmation, select this check box.
    Comment If required, you can use the Comment box to record the reason for the employee’s absence from work.
    Qualifying Days To check or amend the employee’s working or qualifying day pattern, click Qualifying Days, complete the information as follows then click OK.Tip: If prompted that the pattern or start date has changed, click Yes

    The days that the employee is scheduled to work are set up using a qualifying day pattern and this can be made up of one or more weeks.

    The working week always begins on a Sunday. The pattern is made up of the following letters:

    N – Non-working or non-qualifying day Q – Working or qualifying day

    Tip: By default, the pattern NQQQQQN appears. This means that the employee doesn’t work on Sunday, works Monday to Friday and doesn’t work on Saturday.

    If the employee works different days in subsequent weeks, you must also enter the following weeks’ patterns. To enter more than one weekly pattern, click beneath the last pattern then use one of the following options:

    • Manually enter the next pattern.
    • Click the finder button to the right-hand side, choose the required pattern from the list then click OK.

    The patterns are used in turn and depend on the starting date of the first one. Once the last pattern in the list is processed, the pattern starts again.

    Pattern Start Date Enter the date of the Sunday which starts the first, or only, pattern.Note: In the Pattern Start Date box you must enter the date of the Sunday which starts the first, or only, pattern. This should be a Sunday before the employee became sick.
  3. If you want to view or amend the employee’s earnings, click Earnings during set period and, if prompted about holiday payments, click OK. Check the following information then click OK.Tip: The table and the text above it change depending on whether the employee has been processed and updated for all of the relevant pay periods.
    Either:
    Payments made to the employee between dd/mm/yyyy and dd/mm/yyyy
    The following information appears:

    • TW – Tax week number.
    • TM – Tax month number.
    • Gross Pay – The amount of gross pay in that pay period.
    • Updated – The date of the pay period.

    Note: The processed information for the relevant pay periods appears and you cannot amend these values. If this information is incorrect, you may need to roll back the employee’s record for the relevant periods and reprocess.

    Or:
    Using the table below, enter the employee’s gross pay for each period they were paid between dd/mm/yyyy and dd/mm/yyyy
    The following information appears:

    • TW – Tax week number.
    • TM – Tax month number.
    • Gross Pay – Zero values or the amount of pay for any updated pay periods.
    • Updated – No dates or the dates of any updated pay periods.

    Tip: If any or all of the values are zero, for example if you recently starting using the software, to update the table manually, enter the gross pay for all the relevant periods. To move to the next box, press the Tab key.

    Average earnings during this period This uses the gross pay values in the table above.If required, you can amend this value. To do this, manually calculate your employee’s average earnings and enter it in the box provided.
    Recalculate To update the Average earnings during this period box, click Recalculate and, when prompted about holiday payments click OK.Note: If you manually entered a value in the Average earnings during this period box, do not click Recalculate as this changes the value you manually entered to the recalculated value.
  4. Check the following information:
    Qualifying Days The employee’s working or qualifying day pattern appears here.Tip: If the pattern is incorrect, please refer to step 2.
    Average Earnings The employee’s average earnings during the set period appear here. If it is less than £109.00 per week, the employee does not qualify for SSP and must be given form SSP1.Tip: If this value is incorrect, please refer to step 3.
    Key Dates This displays the relevant dates relating to the period of sickness as follows:

    • Current period of sickness – The date range for which SSP is paid this pay period.
    • Set period – The date range of the eight weeks prior to the start of the employee’s sickness or PIW.
      Tip: If there is a linking period, no dates appear here.
    • Previous period of absence – If applicable, previous sick dates relating to a linking period appear here.
    View as diary If required, to view the absence diary click View as diary, then click Close.Tip: To print a calendar view of the key dates, from the Diary View window, follow the on-screen instructions.
    Entitlement due This displays the amount of SSP which is due to the employee in the current pay period. Alternatively, if the employee does not qualify for SSP, the reason appears here.Tip: The current rate of SSP is £86.70 per week. For information about the daily SSP rate, please refer to HMRC Employer Helpbook for Statutory Sick Pay – E14.

    Tip: To print the information on the Quick SSP window, from the bottom left-hand corner click Print, check your printer details are correct then click OK.

  5. To save your changes and close the Quick SSP window, click Save then click Close.

You have now entered the dates and other required information and checked the employee’s entitlement to SSP.

Process Payroll

  1. From the employee list, select the employee, from the navigation bar, click Payroll, from the Tasks pane, click Enter Payments then click the Summary tab.
  2. Check that the correct SSP value appears in the box in the Current column beside Statutory Sick Pay.
    Tip: This is the value you checked in step 4 in the previous section.
  3. If applicable, adjust the employee’s gross pay to reflect any other payments or deductions you want to make.
  4. To move to the next employee, click Save / Next or to close Enter Payments, click Close.

You have now successfully processed payroll for your employee.

Sickness Continues into the next period

If the sickness is ongoing and continues into the next pay period. Follow exactly the same procedure. When entering the first day of sickness, enter the day immediately after the last day of sickness recorded in the previous pay period, include any weekends and non working days. For example, if the last day of sickness entered previously was Friday, enter the first day of sickness as the Saturday.

Tip: To check the last day of sickness entered previously, from the employee’s record click the Absence tab. The sickness appears in the diary with a P symbol.

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