Yesterday saw the launch of the new Test and Trace System which will help to identify those who have come into contact with anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19. Anyone who has been in contact with a victim of the virus, will be asked to self-isolate whether they are displaying symptoms or not. The strategy is part of the Government’s plan to ease lockdown restrictions and help us return to something approaching normality. The system is likely to create issues for employers and employees including over data protection and the risk of employees ignoring the request to self-isolate.
The Government have also extended The Statutory Sick Pay (General) (Coronavirus Amendment) (No. 4) Regulations 2020, so that anyone who has been told to self-isolate under the new ‘Test and Trace’ system will be entitled to Statutory Sick Pay (SSP). If your employees can work from home then there will be no need to treat such an individual as “sick”, but if homeworking is not possible, we might see disagreement over whether an employee should be permitted to continue working, or whether they should stay at home on SSP or contractual sick pay as the case may be.
To help support businesses with these adjustments and with a view to keeping costs to a minimum, we have developed a number of fixed price packages in our Post Lockdown Survival Kits for Businesses.
If you have any questions over employees returning to work, redundancies, or changing terms and conditions:
Please feel free to contact
Partner, Solicitor, Head of Business Services