Under current legislation a Patient ‘self-certificate’ is used for the first seven days that you are off work. If you have been sick for four days in a row or more you can complete a self-certificate form (SC2) and this is available from your Employer or from HMRC online:
LC Forms (hmrc.gov.uk)
After the first week, a Statement of Fitness to Work may be issued after Consultation with the Doctor. Some employers insist on this certificate for less than seven days before they will pay SSP. As this is not a statutory requirement and therefore not a NHS Service we have to charge for a Certificate under seven days.
Evidence that you are Sick
If you are sick for more than seven days, your employer can ask you to give them some form of medical evidence to support payment of SSP (Statutory Sick Pay).
A medical certificate, now called a 'Statement of Fitness for Work’ (see below) from your Doctor is strong evidence that you are sick and would normally be accepted, unless there is evidence to prove otherwise.
You could also provide evidence from someone who is not a Medical Practitioner, e.g. a Dentist or another Healthcare Professional. Your employer will decide whether or not this evidence is acceptable. If your employer has any doubts, they may still ask for a medical certificate from your GP.
Statement of Fitness for Work - ’Fit Note'
The 'Fit Note' was introduced on 6 April 2010. With your employer's support, the note will help you return to work sooner by providing more information about the effects of your illness or injury.
The Doctor might suggest in the fit note ways your employer can help their you get back to work. For example: