New Paid Sick Leave Policy: A HR Guide for Irish Employers

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After 1st January 2024, Irish employers are encountering a significant shift in employee welfare policies – with the increased paid sick leave to 5 days. This legislative change concerns compliance and a profound commitment to employee health and well-being. 

As Ireland’s premier HR consultancy agency, HR Team guides businesses through this transition, ensuring a smooth adaptation that benefits employers and employees.

Understanding the Change

The decision to increase paid sick leave is a response to the growing understanding of the importance of employee health in the workplace. It’s a move that aligns with global trends towards more supportive and people-centric employment policies. For employers, this means re-evaluating current sick leave policies and ensuring they meet the new statutory requirements.

HR Aspects 

  • Eligibility: The provision applies to all employees, regardless of their contract type.
  • Payment: Employers must pay for these sick days at a 70% daily wage rate, with a daily maximum of €110.
  • Accrual System: Employees are required to have been continuously employed for a minimum of 13 weeks by their employer to be eligible for statutory sick leave. 
  • Medical Certification: They must submit a medical certificate from a licensed physician confirming that they cannot work due to illness or injury.

The Impact on Employers

  • Inclusive Financial Planning: Businesses must prepare for the financial implications of this policy change across all employee categories, including full-time and part-time staff.
  • Comprehensive Policy Adjustment: Update sick leave policies to reflect this inclusive approach, ensuring that all employees are aware of and can benefit from the new provisions.


The Role of HR-Team

  • Strategic Planning: Tailored advice on effectively integrating the new sick leave policy across all employee types.
  • Policy Development for Diverse Workforces: Expertise in crafting policies that include full-time and part-time employees.
  • Comprehensive Training: Training for HR and management teams on administering sick leave to all employees reasonably and beneficially.
  • Continuous Support: Ongoing guidance in the face of evolving employment laws and workplace trends.
  • B.E.T. Performance Management System: HR Team offers a unique and expertly devised performance management support system the B.E.T. Based on extensive experience in people management, this bespoke system implements a transparent, three-step process, bringing essential structure and effectiveness to your performance management strategies.
  • Flexible Month-on-Month Contracts: Unlike numerous HR firms, HR Team offers unparalleled flexibility with our month-to-month contracts. Opt for our pay-as-you-go packages and receive specialised HR advice, support, and training without the burden of long-term commitments.

Take Part in a More Inclusive Workplace

The increased paid sick leave marks a significant step in promoting Ireland’s more inclusive, supportive work environment. By preparing for this change, employers comply with the law and demonstrate a commitment to the well-being of their entire workforce, regardless of their employment status.

Contact HR Team for expert guidance in preparing your business for this inclusive approach to employee health. Our comprehensive HR services ensure that your company meets the new legislative standards and fosters a workplace culture that nurtures the health and well-being of every employee.


How much should I pay an employee for certified leave?

As an employer, you must pay your employees 70% of their average daily salary for certified leave, with the payment capped at a maximum of €110 per day.

What are the eligibility criteria and conditions for granting statutory sick leave to my employees?

To qualify for statutory sick leave, an employee must have completed 13 weeks of employment in your company. They must submit a medical certificate from a registered medical practitioner stating their unfitness to work due to illness or injury. 

The entitlement to statutory sick leave commences from the employee’s first day of such leave. It applies to days when the employee is typically scheduled to work but cannot due to their health condition. This leave can be availed on both consecutive and non-consecutive days as needed.

What are my obligations as an employer regarding employee protection during statutory sick leave?

As an employer, you must treat employees who request statutory sick leave without any negative consequences. Ensuring their leave does not impact any employment rights or benefits they are entitled to is essential. 

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