Paid sick leave entitlement on track for New Year
An entitlement to paid sick leave is scheduled to come into effect in the New Year after the Tánaiste, Leo Varadkar signed the commencement order.
From January, workers will be entitled to up to 3 days of sick leave in a year, paid at 70% of gross salary up to a cap of €110.
The entitlement is expected to increase to 10 days sick leave a year by 2026.
In the event of an extended illness, the scheme will operate in tandem with the existing illness benefit system which kicks in on day four of an absence.
“Ireland has been an outlier among developed countries in not providing for statutory paid sick leave,” Tánaiste and Minister for of Enterprise, Trade and Employment, Leo Varadkar said.
“The Sick Leave Act 2022 changes that and ensures that employees will have an entitlement to paid sick leave. It will be of greatest benefit to lower paid workers, many of whom cannot afford to miss work currently. We do not want people to feel they have to go to work when they are sick, for fear of loss of income,” he said.
The Minister added that the new entitlement amounted to a valuable public health measure, reducing the risk of workplace accidents and the likelihood of infectious disease transmission in the workplace.
The legislation sets out the minimum standard that an employer must provide.
“It will not prevent employers having superior sick pay schemes of their own to attract and retain staff or on foot of an agreement with a trade union,” the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment said in its statement.
The new entitlement to paid sick leave from comes into effect from 1 January 2023.