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Claiming Tax Back After going on Sick Leave

Being sick is always a horrible experience.

This article may help to put a silver lining on being ill, as it explains you how you might be able to claim a tax refund if you were on sick leave from work.

  1. What is sick pay?
  2. Is sick pay taxable?
  3. Can I claim a tax refund?
  4. What is the deadline?

What is sick pay?

There are two types of sick pay

  1. Statutory sick pay - If you are off work ill, this is the most common type of sick pay that employees get.

  2. Contractual sick pay - When you signed your work contract, there may have been a section which stated you were entitled to extra income above the rate of statutory sick pay

Is sick pay taxable?

Statutory Sick pay (SSP) is paid weekly at the rate of  £79.15

As your sick pay is a form of income it should be taxed and there is often the misconception that SSP is tax free.

Even though you need to pay tax on your SSP often people end up overpaying and as a result can claim a tax refund.

Can I claim a tax refund?

Often people overpay tax when they go on to SSP.The reason why people over pay is that each year, everyone is given a tax free allowance (currently  £6,475). If, for example, you are on sick pay for the whole year, you would have only earned:

52 x £79.15 = £4115.80.

Because this is below the tax free allowance, any tax that you would have paid would be refundable. Even if you are not on SSP for a whole year it is possible to make a claim. At the end of the tax year you will get a P60 from your employer. Use this and a tax refund calculator to see if you may be due a tax refund:

Your P60 should look similar to this:

There are two boxes which have ‘total for the year’ written next to them and ‘Tax’ and ‘Pay’ above them. You can see a clearer image of where these are located on the P60 below:

What is the deadline?

If you have been on sick leave anytime in the last 6 years, you may be due a tax refund. The deadlines to make a claim are currently changing and we therefore recommend that you make any claims as soon as possible.

If you have any questions about being on SSP and claiming a tax refund, please leave them in the comments below and we will endeavour to answer them:

Claim a Tax Refund Today

apply for a tax rebate

Further Reading:

Anonymous - Thursday, June 24th, 2010

I have been on the sick now for 4 months my firm pays me ssp of £79.15p do they pay me my tax back

TaxFix - Friday, June 25th, 2010

Anonymous: You will need to claim a tax refund that you may be due with the Inland Revenue. At the end of the tax year you will be given a P60, and you can use this to check if you may be due a tax rebate with our tax calculator.

BigLad - Monday, August 16th, 2010

Hi! I was employed but now i recieve sick pay. Can you tell me what form i need to complete in order to claim any owed tax back. Thank You.

Jayne Bickerdike - Tuesday, October 19th, 2010

I am currently off sick due to a motorbike accident, my full pay has now run out and i am on statutory sick pay, can i claim any tax back.

TaxFix - Tuesday, October 19th, 2010

Jayne Bickerdike: You may be eligible for a tax rebate. It depends on how much you recieve income (both from your job and any allowances such as SSP) and how much tax you pay. At the end of the tax year on April 5th 2011 you can make a claim when you have your P60.

Susan Holman - Thursday, October 21st, 2010

I work 15 hours a week contracted. i am going to have a shoullder replacement and cannot work for several weeks.
As i am over 60, am i entitled to claim SSp or any thing else.
Thank you.

EMMA - Monday, November 1st, 2010

Im on sick leave from work and in the last 2 weeks pay ive been given tax back. What id the reason for tis?

TaxFix - Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

EMMA: You are normally given tax back when you overpay tax.

Al - Thursday, November 11th, 2010

Had an accident at work on 10/07/09 and was off, initially on SSP 28 weeks then ESA £266 PER FORTNIGHT until 01Nov2010 – (Rtn to work date).
Should I expect a tax refund and if so when should I apply or expect it. (If entitled).

Many thanks,


TaxFix - Monday, November 15th, 2010

Al: It all depends on how much you have earned (including SSP+ESA) and how much you paid in tax for the whole tax year. You can check to see if you are due a rebate by using our tax rebate calculator here . At the end of the tax year you will be able to make any claim.

paul - Thursday, November 25th, 2010

iv had accident twice last year and had ssp only,can i claim any tax?what have to do?

TaxFix - Friday, November 26th, 2010

paul: It is determined by the amount you’ve earned (including any SSP) as well as how much you actually paid in taxes throughout each tax year (April 6th till April 5th of the subsequent year). You should check to determine if you’re eligible for a refund by using the tax refund calculator listed here

Viv  - Sunday, January 30th, 2011

I am 64 and have a goverment pension can i claim ssp when i go in for a opperation

Linda Fraser - Monday, January 31st, 2011

I have been on sick for 6 months
My employer said im not entilted to any holidays as I have not accrued enough days to give me leave or payment
please advise

TaxFix - Tuesday, February 1st, 2011

Linda Fraser: You would need to read your employment contract or seek the advice of an employment lawyer.

k carter - Friday, February 4th, 2011

i have just had a heart by pass operation and i am now on sick leave for at least 12 weeks i would like to know if i can claim any tax back or do i just recive ssp till i go back to work.

TaxFix - Wednesday, February 9th, 2011

k carter: It depends on how much you earn (including any benefits) and paid in tax, during the tax year. When you know these figures for the whole tax year you can use our tax rebate calculator to see if you are due any tax back

Gordon McCartney - Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011

I am going in for an op on my hand in a fortnight and will require 6 months off work. My employer will pay me full pay for one month and half pay for one month, i will then be on ssp for the remaining 4 months, will i get a tax refund at the end of the year and if i dont ask for it do they just keep it??

TaxFix - Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Gordon McCartney: It depends on how much you earn and how much you pay in tax. If you earn the same as normal, then probably not.

trev - Tuesday, May 17th, 2011

i am waiting for a oparation any day now and have been on full pay from work they now tell me im going on half pay is there any benifits or sick pay im intiteld to or any tax i can claim back iv been of work now 4 months

dawne - Tuesday, June 14th, 2011

im on the sick i have had full pay, now im on half pay can i cliam something to top it up.

barbara gregory - Friday, July 15th, 2011

my husband is emploed and claims is state pension if he is sick can he still claim ssp he is 65

Samantha  - Tuesday, August 16th, 2011

My doctor signed me off work for one week because I slipped at work and twisted my back and tummy ( in also 25 weeks pregnant), because I did the accident at work should I be entitled to full pay or will I only get ssp?

Terry - Wednesday, October 12th, 2011

I have jsut had to have 2 weeks off sick due to a car accident and only had £54 can i claim any tax back

susan - Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

Can I still claim SSP even though I am a pensioner still working part time

avril campbell - Monday, May 28th, 2012

I received only half pay today I have worked for my organisation 4yrs between 18th-20th 2008 until present.
I worked 20hrs for first year 7mnths then increased my hours to 30hrs to present day and I have never received contract.
My employee hand book states that between 4 and 5 years servise I as an employee is entitled to 5month full pay and 5 month half pay.
Where do I stand?
I have been on sick-leave since 10th february 2012 with mental health issues,I do not have sickness record previously except few days here and there which included being sent home twice by senior staff,any help much appreciated

Shirley  - Thursday, June 14th, 2012

I was in a car crash in january, Due to the nature of my job i am unable to return to work at present due to injuries to my wrist and neck. I received full pay for 2 weeks and half pay for 2 weeks.I have received ssp since march. Can i claim a tax rebate?

Karen - Friday, July 20th, 2012

iv been off work after hysterectomy and had ssp for that period, would i be eligable for tax rebate.

d brown - Monday, September 10th, 2012

i,ve been on sick leave for 8 months now due to a heart attack ,my company told me i would have to claim benefits 3 month ago which i have done esa ,the troble is i,ve worked for 44 years and this is the first time i,ve every been on benefits ,can i claim some tax back?

d brown - Monday, September 10th, 2012

i,ve been on sick leave for 8 months now due to a heart attack ,my company told me i would have to claim benefits 3 month ago which i have done esa ,the troble is i,ve worked for 44 years and this is the first time i,ve every been on benefits ,can i claim some tax back?

Anonymous - Monday, October 8th, 2012

I am currently on long term sick leave but am not eligible to claim SSP as l only work part-time and do not earn the mimimum amount of wages. Will l therefore be entitled to a tax rebate. Until a few years ago l worked full-time and have paid full NI Contributions for over 35 years.

Liz Meehan - Tuesday, October 16th, 2012

i have been on sick leave since april ,i have been told my SSP runs out at end october , am i entitled to any tax rebate or to claim any benefits ? , i am however hoping to return to work in the near future.
many thanks
Liz Meehan

J.b  - Wednesday, November 7th, 2012

I’ve just started back working after traveling for 2years when will I be entitled to claim sick pay

gill - Sunday, November 11th, 2012

i been off work for 6 months now, my work has payed me in full for the 6 months, now after the 6 months i will only get half pay from them, can i claim from the social to top up my wages ?? can anyone help me

julie mcintyre - Monday, June 10th, 2013

I have been off work for almost a year. After receiving ssp i am now in receipt of esa. Please can you advise


anne - Thursday, July 25th, 2013

i have a company car which my tax code reflects this
i am unable to work at the present time due to a fractured ankle and will have to go on ssp
what is my tax possition with my employer and the hmrc will i be entitled to a tax rebate i expect to be off work for 3 months
and paid tax on the company up to my accident?