Bradford Factor

What is Self-Certification?

If a person is off sick for more than 7 days, they must produce a 'fit note' from their Doctor.

But what happens if an employee is off for 7 days or less? It is normal practice for an employer to request that an employee complete a form once they return to work. This is known as 'self-certification'. The self-certificate is completed to ensure that eligible employees receive Statutory Sick Pay. It also allows employers to keep track of number of days sick and any commonalities/trends.

According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), in 2013/14 there were 535 000 new cases of self-reported ill health. Analysis showed:

The self-certification process is based on a mutual trust between employee and employer and sadly, open to abuse. Companies that invest in their staff and who have a good professional relationship with them generally have a lower sickness rate than those who do not.

Most businesses have developed their own 'self-certification' form, but there is an online form (SC2) that employees can complete if an employer does not have a document in place.

The self-certification form asks basic information:

If an employee is ill during their holiday, it can be converted into sick leave. Statutory holiday entitlement is accrued whilst an employee is absent from work through illness and any unused leave can be carried forward into the next year.

Bradford Factor Resources

Additional Bradford Factor Resources

For further information on The Bradford Factor (Use, Implementation and Record Keeping), please review our Bradford Factor guides and management strategy information.