You do not require a doctor's sickness certificate for any illness lasting seven days or less. Your employer may however require you to complete a self-certification form (SC2) which is available from your employer or on the HMRC website.
Evidence that you are sick
If you are sick for more than seven days, your employer can ask you to give them some form of medical evidence to support payment of SSP (statutory sick pay).
It is up to your employer to decide whether you are incapable of work. A medical certificate, now called a 'Statement of Fitness for Work’ (see below) from your doctor is strong evidence that you are sick and would normally be accepted, unless there is evidence to prove otherwise.
You could also provide evidence from someone who is not a medical practitioner, e.g. a dentist. Your employer will decide whether or not this evidence is acceptable. If your employer has any doubts, they may still ask for a medical certificate from your GP.
If you are an inpatient in hospital, or a hospital doctor advises that you are unfit to work, then you can ask them to give you a Med3, rather than having to see your GP. Under Govt guidance, it is the responsibility of the doctor who advises you not to work to provide a med3, and hospitals also have these certificates.
Statement of Fitness for Work - ’Fit Note'[sicknote, med3]
The 'fit note' was introduced on 6 April 2010. With your employer's support, the note will help you return to work sooner by providing more information about the effects of your illness or injury.
For more information see the DirectGov website (where this information was sourced)
Requests for sicknotes for school/university, or absences less than 7 days.
As Govt "Fit notes" are for Statutory sick pay or Govt benefits only, if a school or university asks a patient for a note to cover a sickness, this will be done as a private paid certificate. The cost of such a certificate is available from our reception.