When an MSC fellow goes on sick leave, the scenarios are:
1. If the employer is obliged to pay the full MSC rate, we will reimburse the full MSC rate. The employment contract may not be extended in this case.
2. Depending on the country, it may be compulsory that the employer pays the employee only a percentage of the MSC rate. In this case, we will reimburse only the actual costs of the employer. The employment contract may be extended for the months, which may be covered from the unspent funds earmarked for this MSC fellow. The extension may not go beyond the end date of the project.
3. Depending on the national legal framework, the national security may reimburse part of the salary that the employer continues paying to an MSC researcher. The REA would reimburse only the part compulsory on the employer to be paid. Unlike in cases of maternity leave, we would request documents confirming the obligation on the employer to pay costs only in case of doubt. As in point 2, the employment contract may be extended for the months, which may be covered from the unspent funds earmarked for this MSC fellow. The extension may not go beyond the end date of the project.
3. When the sick leave is for a prolonged period, the fellow will go on incapacity benefit, which is paid entirely by the national security. Technically, the fellow ceases to be an employee, and so we also stop covering the employer’s costs (in practice there should not be any costs for the employer as it is the national security that pays a benefit and the fellow no longer receives a salary).
4. If during the sick leave, the employer agrees with the fellow to suspend the employment contract, e.g. because the sick leave pay is entirely covered by the national security and the fellow would like to retake the activities after the sick leave, the employment contract may be extended within the duration of the action. In this case, we suspend payments, and then resume them after the resumption of activities by the MSC fellow.
5. When a fellow is on sick leave, and the employer pays full or a part of the MSC rate, they will only be able to claim the living allowance and overheads (similar to maternity leave).
In terms of reporting, in case of payment of a percentage of the salary (points 1 and 2), the beneficiary should report actual costs incurred. In H2020, there is a drop down menu, from which beneficiaries are able to choose part time work (percentage of worked time), which may be used for the reporting of partial payments like the ones in cases of sick leave.