Are agency workers entitled to sick pay?

As an agency worker, you will be entitled to Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) if: 

  • your normal weekly earnings exceed £120 a week (if your pay varies, your entitlement depends on your average pay over the previous eight weeks); and 

  • you are absent from work due to illness for at least four consecutive days (including weekends, bank holidays and days that you do not normally work). 

If you qualify for SSP, it is normally paid in the same way as your wages. It is paid at a flat rate of £95.85 since April 2020 and can be paid for up to 28 weeks if your sickness lasts that long. It is not paid for the first three days that you are on sick leave – these are called 'waiting days'.The rules on ‘waiting days’ have been changed temporarily for the duration of the coronavirus pandemic, but only if you are sick or self-isolating due to coronavirus. You will be entitled to SSP from day one, with no need to serve the waiting days. However, you will still need to be off sick or self-isolating due to COVID for four days in order to qualify for SSP. 

The situation is a fast-changing one, but you can find information on rights to SSP and other payments on the GOV.UK website and via the Acas Helpline.   

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.

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