Ministers scrap sick pay changes. By Dan Martin

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Plans to overturn sick pay regulations by requiring employers to provide benefits to staff from the first day of their illness have been scrapped by the government.

Work and pensions secretary John Hutton revealed on Monday that proposals to simplify sick pay rules will be dropped because they would be too expensive to employers.

Employers are currently obliged to pay workers after three days of absence due to sickness.

Speaking at a conference in Birmingham, Hutton said: "Our intention was to simplify the process of administering the scheme while maintaining that crucial balance between helping to keep costs down and retaining protection for the most vulnerable employees.

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