Been off Work?

In our experience there is often a lot of confusion over the requirement for certification for absence from work on health grounds and whether you need to see a doctor or not.

The law states that you may self-certify your illness for 7 days before any need for an official medical fit to work certificate. This means that you can make the decision that you are not well enough to go to work without having to go to your GP.

So, If you are off work for up to 7 days you do not need a fit note from your doctor.

You should "self-certify" using a form that your employer will provide. Alternatively, you can obtain the form here or at reception desk (please ask our reception).

Unfortunately, some employers are insisting on a doctor's note for less than one week's absence. If you need a fit note in these circumstances, the doctor will charge a fee of £20.

If your illness continues for more than 7 days and you feel unable to return to work, your GP can issue an official Department of Health Statement (this is called a Fit for work certificate) certifying your illness.

You will have to be seen and examined by your GP in order for the fit for work certificate to be issued. It cannot be issued by telephone request. The only exception to this is if your request is for a consecutive continuation of a previous certificate. Even then it is at the discretion of your GP and you may still have to be seen in the surgery before the certificate can be issued.

Important Note: If you request a “fit note” for an illness of less than 7 days’ duration, then you may request a Private Doctor’s Statement. There is a £20 fee for this and is payable by either yourself or, in some cases, your employer.

Information - You will have to be seen by your GP for this certificate to be issued.

Please feel free to contact the Practice Reception Staff if you have any queries about your sickness certificates.

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