You do not require a doctor's sickness certificate for any illness lasting seven days or less. Your employer may however require you to complete a self-certification form (SC2) which is available from your employer or on the HMRC website.
Doctors are not required to, and do not issue, NHS sick notes for the first seven days of illness.
If you require a certificate for the first seven days from your doctor, please ask, in writing, for a private sick note for which a fee is payable. A receipt will be issued for this.
If you are unable to return to work after seven days, contact the surgery via eConsult. Please include as much information as possible (reason for absence, sickness start date, expected sickness end date) and ensure we have your current contact details in case we need to contact you to discuss the request further.
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).
It is up to your employer to decide whether you are incapable of work. 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. 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.
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.
For more information see the DirectGov website (where this information was sourced)
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