6 Financial tips on what to do if you get ill or long term sick
If the worst should happen and you fall ill and have to take significant time off work, there are some steps you can take to help see you through:
1. Get to know your entitlements
The first thing to do is check you are receiving all the money that is available to you.
This could come from different places so it is worth checking carefully.
- With so many entitlements that you may potentially have eligibility for, please take a moment to visit the Money Advice Service’s dedicated section by clicking here.
2. Speak to your employer
From your employer, you may be eligible for Statutory Sick Pay. This is for up to 28 weeks as long as you are employed but unable to work and you earned an average of at least £112 a week in the two months before you stopped working.
The minimum sick pay you are entitled to is £88.45 a week but some employers may be more generous. You should check your contract or talk to your HR department to find out what you are entitled to.
You are also legally entitled to ask your employer to make reasonable changes to your working conditions if these would enable you to return to work. These might include:
- Flexible hours
- A reasonable change to your workload
- Use of special equipment such as furniture and IT to help make you more comfortable.
You should also speak to your employer or pension provider if you have been paying into a workplace pension as some include sickness benefits such as early retirement options.
- Find out more about Statutory Sick Pay by visiting the Turn2Us charity website by clicking here.
3. Get help from The Government
You might be eligible for some state benefits some of which are not well known; these include:
- Personal Independence Payment
- Tax credits
- Housing Benefit
- Carer’s Allowance
- Employment and Support Allowance
4. Check Your Insurance Policies
If you have Critical illness insurance as well as Life insurance you might be eligible for a pay-out depending on the nature of your illness. Read your policy carefully and contact your insurer if in doubt.
If you have mortgage payment protection or other payment protection policies you are probably entitled to make a claim. Again, read your documentation carefully or contact your provider. Do this as soon as possible to avoid running up non-payment penalties.
- The Citizens Advice website offers an in-depth look at Critical illness insurance.
5. Contact your service providers
Contrary to popular belief no one wants to cut off your phone/electricity/bank overdraft. If you contact the relevant companies and explain your situation you will probably be able to work something out with them. In these cases, honesty really is the best policy.
- If you can’t survive on your current income because of illness, click here to see what else may be able to help.
6. Loan warning
Whilst we are a loan broker, we fully endorse responsible lending, and for people to only take on debt if it’s affordable and sustainable.
So if you are having money issues as a result of being ill, any reputable lender will only help you if you are able to show that the monthly loan repayments are affordable and sustainable for you.
We specialise in helping people with a less than perfect credit file, so if you have a source of income, a guarantor, and are able to show affordability, get no-obligation quotes from our panel of lenders.
Warning: taking on additional debt can cause serious money problems
Please only consider taking on additional borrowing if you are completely sure that you will have the means to pay this back.
For help, go to moneyadviceservice.org.uk
See our Responsible Lending Policy