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New rates for statutory payments

Changes in the statutory payments which employers must make for 2011/12 have been announced.

The new rates are due to come into force as from April 2011.

According to the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), statutory sick pay (SSP) is to rise from  £79.15 to £81.60 per week.

Statutory maternity pay (SMP), following the initial six weeks at 90 per cent of earnings, increases for the subsequent 33 weeks to £128.73 per week, up from £124.88.

A similar rise - from £124.88 to £128.73 per week - is also to apply to ordinary statutory paternity pay (OSPP), additional statutory paternity pay (ASPP) and statutory adoption pay (SAP).

However, the amount a small employer can reclaim under the 'small employers' compensation rate' is set to fall from 104.5 per cent to 103 per cent. This is because there is to be a rise in national insurance thresholds in 2011/12. As a consequence, a lower compensation rate is required to balance the reduction in employers' NI costs when making statutory payments.

Employers should note that Parliament has yet to sign off the new rates.