Legally, you only need a doctor’s certificate if you are absent from work due to illness for eight or more days (including bank holidays and weekends). We are not obliged to provide a certificate for absences of less than this. Therefore, you do not need to see a doctor for a certificate if you are off for seven or fewer days (including bank holidays and weekends).
If you are off for between three and seven days, your employer will ask you to complete a self-certification form, which is available either from your employer or online at www.hmrc.gov.uk/forms/sc2.pdf
If your employer insists on a doctor’s certificate for an absence of seven days or fewer, the doctor may issue a private certificate, for which a fee is payable.
For more information on statutory sick pay, see the government’s website: