Many people rushed to book their summer holidays as the Government started to ease the UK’s lockdown. The recent changes to quarantine regulations have caused more uncertainty for employers and employees.
The new guidance is that anyone who is returning from Spain must self-isolate for 14 days, there is no guidance on how long this will remain the case.
What can employers do if their staff are due to travel to Spain?
Working from Home
Where possible an employee can self-isolate and continue to work from home. During the lockdown period working from home became, and remains for many, the new normal. If your staff can work from home during their 14 day self-isolation period let them. This will provide the best mitigation and a simple solution to ensuring business continuity.
If an employee was furloughed before the 30 June 2020 an employee could be furloughed for their isolation period. The contributions made by both the employer and the Government will change from 1 August 2020 onwards (read more here).
Statutory Sick Pay
The Government update the sick pay regulations at the start of the pandemic (read more here). Where an employee cannot work due to Coronavirus, even if this is due to self isolation, they are entitled to Statutory Sick Pay. Key points to know are that the usual counting days have been removed for coronavirus related absences and that employers can reclaim the first week of Statutory Sick Pay.
Cancel Annual Leave
Employers can cancel annual leave that has been authorised. This would not be a popular option and notice will need to be given. In order to cancel annual leave you need to give the same amount of notice as the leave itself.
We recommend that cancellation of annual leave should be used carefully and as a last resort.
Contact us for further assistance on dealing with the impact of the Spanish Quarantine.