Sick leave is changing in Spain as from this December

A new Royal Decree has been issued in Spain which will change the way sick leave is regulated as from this December.

The Real Decreto 625/2014, de 18 de julio, por el que se regulan determinados aspectos de la gestión y control de los procesos por incapacidad temporal en los primeros trescientos sesenta y cinco días de su duración, aims to reduce the paperwork involved in issuing sick leave to workers and control the amount of time workers can claim.

This new law will issue GP’s across Spain with a new list of tables showing the average time off needed for hundreds of the most common medical complaints, graded for age, profession and sex of the patient.

The aim of the tables is to standardise the amount of time off for the most common complaints. GP’s will be expected to issue sick leave in accordance with these tables unless there are extenuating circumstances, instead of the current system which requires patients to visit their GP every six days to get a new sick note, which must then be passed to their employers and to the social security office.

The new law is expected to come into effect in six months time, as from the 1st of December 2015, and a series of ministerial orders are being prepared which will regulate the specifics of the system. It will only regulate “common illness”, not work related accidents.

Maria Luisa

María Luisa Cervantes is a chartered accountant who graduated from the University of Granada in 2002. Founder of Cervantes Alarcón Consulting, she is an experienced accountant and financial advisor who is a member of the Almería guild of economists. With more than 15 years of experience in business administration and international trade, she is also a subject matter expert in the UK - Spanish bilateral agreements which cover the rights of expats to live, work and retire in Spain.