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HMRC internal manual

Decisions and appeals for National Insurance Contributions and Statutory Payments

Decision types: Statutory payments decisions: Liability to pay decisions

Decisions about who is liable to pay statutory payments to a worker are made under section 8(1)(g) of the Social Security Contributions (Transfer of Functions, etc.) Act 1999 or Article 7(1)(g) of the Social Security Contributions (Transfer of Functions, etc.) (Northern Ireland) Order 1999 (SI 1999 No 671).

When a person is liable to pay statutory payments (SPs) there will also be an employee with entitlement to them. So, often decisions about liability to pay SPs are issued with decisions about an employee’s entitlement to receive SPs, see DANSP19300. Usually, the person liable to pay the SP is the worker’s employer. Guidance about who is liable to pay can be found at

  • SPM10210 - Statutory Sick Pay (SSP)
  • SPM20205 - Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP)
  • SPM30205 - Statutory Adoption Pay (SAP)
  • SPM40205 - Ordinary Statutory Paternity Pay (OSPP) (previously known as Statutory Paternity Pay)
  • SPM45110 - Additional Statutory Paternity Pay (ASPP).

The type of disputes that may require a decision about who is liable to pay SPs include

  • an employer has not paid any SPs when an employee has entitlement,
  • an employee works for more than one employer carrying on business in association together, see NIM10010,
  • an employer withholds payment of SPs because the employee notified a period of incapacity for work or date they wanted SMP, OSPP, SAP or ASPP to start late and the employer considers the employee did not have a good enough excuse but the employee considers they have a good excuse, see SPM10410,
  • employees transferred to another business entity and both business entities refuse to pay SPs, see SPM10215.

For guidance about wording decisions about liability see DANSP36900.