17 December 2018

Half of workers worried about income if they were to fall ill for more than a month

3 min read

 
Meera Khanna, Consumer PR Manager

Meera Khanna

Consumer PR Manager - Protection

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Official figures show a million workers are off sick for more than a month every year, with new Royal London research showing half (52%) of workers would worry about their income if they were to become too ill to work for longer than a month.

  • A million workers are off sick for more than a month every year, with research showing half (52%) would worry about their income if they became too ill to work  
  • 42% do not think £92 a week would be enough to live on if they were to go off sick for a long period of time
  • The average UK worker stands to lose almost £450 in pay if they were off sick for a week without contractual sick pay

Nearly two-thirds (60%) found their employer’s sick pay policies difficult to understand, with one in six workers not knowing what their employer’s policy is.  Employees are entitled to £92.05 a week Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for up to 28 weeks, yet two in five (42%) didn’t think this was enough to live on if they were off sick for more than a year.

Employers may enhance SSP, but different companies have different policies – a quarter of those surveyed thought the opposite, and mistakenly believed sick pay policies were the same across all companies and industries. Some employers offer contractual sick pay, which is more generous than SSP and you could be entitled to it from the first day of sick leave.

The average UK worker stands to lose almost £450 in pay if they were off sick for a week without contractual sick pay. Employees are therefore being urged to think about how they would manage their finances if they were faced with this situation.

Jennifer Gilchrist, Protection Specialist at Royal London, said:

“Falling ill unexpectedly could happen to anyone. With a million workers off sick for more than a month, it’s important to think about how you would manage financially and make plans, so you do not have the added financial worry if you were to fall ill.”                     

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For further information please contact:

Meera Khanna, Consumer PR Manager

About Royal London:

Royal London is the largest mutual life, pensions and investment company in the UK, with funds under management of £117 billion, 8.8 million policies in force and 3,745 employees. Figures quoted are as at 30 June 2018.