If your illness or condition means you cannot work, there are procedures to enable you to cover your absence and get sickness payments if you are eligible.
If you are off work for three days or less, you may not need a certificate. Four days to seven days (i.e. up to a calendar week) is covered by a self-certificate which you can complete yourself. A blank form can be printed HERE or obtained from the reception desk, Post Office, Library or Citizens Advice Bureau.
Absences for eight days or more require a doctor’s sickness certificate (a “certificate” or “a line”). These are given by the doctor but you must complete the relevant section on the reverse of the certificate. Usually they are shown or given to your employer before being used by the Benefits Agency. If you are unemployed, you may still need these certificates in order to claim appropriate benefits. It is a legal requirement that for most sickness certificates, the doctor has to examine you before issuing the certificate.