When you fall ill, you may be entitled to statutory sick pay or contractual sick pay. This article will outline the correct procedures for claiming statutory sick pay and when you are entitled to under UK employment law.Statutory sick pay (SSP) is compensation that you can be entitled to if you are ill and unable to work. If you work under a contract of service, even if you have only just started, then you are entitled to SSP if you are ill for at least four days in a row and you have earnings on average of at least Â£97. If you are self-employed, you will be unable to claim.To be eligible, you must tell your employer that you are sick if you feel that it may affect your ability to work and that you may need time off. If you employer requires it, you must provide some sort of medical evidence from the eighth day of your illness.As of 6th April 2010, the standard weekly rate for SSP is Â£79.15 per week. Your actual amount you will receive is worked out by dividing the weekly rate by the amount of days you would normally work during the week.Sick pay is subject to tax and national insurance contributions in the same way that your normal pay would be. However if you only receive SSP your earnings may not be high enough to pay tax unless you get other payments on top of your SSP.Statutory sick pay is payable for up to 28 weeks and if you are off sick with gaps of eight weeks or less, your sick days will be added together.If you ever feel that an employer has breached the terms of your employment with them, contact a reliable employment solicitor. Many offer a free initial consultation or no win no fee, so will be able to let you know whether you have grounds for making a claim.Your solicitor should take the time to listen to your case and recommend the best plan of action, whether that be legal action, mediation or other.