Half (52%) of workers would worry about their income if they were to become too ill to work for longer than a month, research suggests.
The survey from Royal London also found nearly two-thirds (60%) of workers found their employer’s sick pay policies difficult to understand, with one in six workers not knowing what their employer’s policy is.
Employees are entitled to £92.05 a week Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for up to 28 weeks, yet two in five (42%) did not think this was enough to live on if they were off sick for more than a year.
Employers may enhance SSP, but different companies have different policies. A quarter of those surveyed thought the opposite, and mistakenly believed sick pay policies were the same across all companies and industries.
The average UK worker stands to lose almost £450 in pay if they were off sick for a week without contractual sick pay, Royal London said.
Jennifer Gilchrist, protection specialist at Royal London, warned that falling ill unexpectedly could happen to anyone.
“With a million workers off sick for more than a month, it’s important to think about how you would manage financially and make plans, so you do not have the added financial worry if you were to fall ill,” she added.