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Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) in QuickBooks Online Advanced Payroll

Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) is paid to employees who are unable to work because of illness. This is the legal minimum you must pay your employee. This guide explains how you would go about this, but first let’s look at some of the terminology around SSP.

Period of incapacity for work (PIW)

In order for SSP to be paid a PIW needs to be formed. This is a period of sickness lasting 4 or more consecutive days, this includes non-working days, bank holidays and weekends.

If there are less than 4 days then no PIW has been formed, so no SSP is due.

Average Weekly Earnings (AWE)

An employee must have average weekly earnings of at least the Lower Earnings Limit (LEL) for National Insurance to qualify for SSP.

Qualifying Days

These are the days your employee normally works, they can be counted as waiting days and can be paid SSP.

Waiting Days

When a PIW had been formed, the first 3 days are not payable, these are the waiting days, after this SSP is due. If the PIW is linked then the waiting days only apply to the first PIW.

Paying SSP

  1. Go into your Open pay run, and select the employee you wish to pay.
  2. Click on ActionsPay Statutory Leave.
  3. Select Statutory Sick Pay from the drop down list. This will open up the SSP screen.
    • The ‘from’ and ‘to’ dates default to the date range of your open pay run.
    • The waiting days will default to 3 but you can override this should you require.
    • The qualifying days default to Mon to Fri.
  4. Select the start and end date your employee was off sick by clicking the calendar buttons.
  5. Tick the qualifying days your employee works.
  6. Click Calculate.
  7. Once the SSP has been calculated, click View Log to see the calculations.It shows the relevant period, which is the previous 8 weeks before the sickness:
    • Earnings over that period
    • The calculation to confirm the average weekly earnings (AWE)
    • Confirmation that the employee qualifies for SSP
    • The waiting days applied
    • The qualifying days applied
  8. Click Apply to make the payment in the pay run.

Once applied, you will see the waiting days, the number of SSP days and the amount of SSP paid.

You will also see the corresponding days of salary being deducted, so the employee  won’t get paid his normal wage and SSP at the same time.


Should the employee be off sick again for more than 4 consecutive days within a period of eight weeks or less, their SSP will be linked. This means that the employee will not have 3 waiting days deducted.

Employee Not Entitled to SSP

You may have an employee that isn’t entitled to SSP, it could be that they have reached the maximum 28 weeks payable, or they don’t have sufficient earnings. In these cases you need to issue an SSP1 form.

If you tick Choose not to pay SSP, it will then allow you to select a reason from the drop down list.

Once this has been applied, the pay run will show that no SSP has been paid.

Once the pay run has been finalised, go into Employee DetailsLeave Balances to find the link to the SSP1 form.

Note: if you are transferring your payroll from another system and you have an employee who is currently off sick, you can override the waiting days in the pay run to 0.

You also have the option to override the average weekly earnings in the pay run as well.

If your employee has reached the cap of 28 weeks SSP, you will be unable to pay any more SSP and will be given a warning in the View Log area.

Use the Employee Details, Documents to store any sick certificates.

You can set up your employees qualifying days pattern in Employee DetailsPay run Defaults, Standard Work Week, then click on Advanced to edit the days your employee works.