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EU PolicyWatch

Database of national-level policy measures

Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure ES-2020-11/832 – measures in Spain

Periods of isolation assimilated into work accidents in terms of economic benefits

Asimilación de los periodos de cuarentena o aislamiento a la situación de accidente de trabajo a efectos económicos

Country Spain , applies nationwide
Time period Open ended, started on 12 March 2020
Context COVID-19
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Income protection beyond short-time work
– Paid sick leave
Author Oscar Molina (UAB) and Eurofound
Measure added 11 May 2020 (updated 30 April 2021)

Background information

Article 5 of Royal Decree Law 6/2020, of 10 March, establishes that in order to protect the public health, periods of isolation or infection of workers caused by COVID-19 shall be considered, exceptionally, as a situation similar to a work accident, exclusively for the economic benefit of temporary disability.

It must be understood that if the contagion occurs "at work", the sick must be considered an occupational accident at work for all purposes (not only the economic benefit).

The measure also applies to self-employees registered in any of the Social Security systems.

Content of measure

Royal Decree Law 6/2020 establishes that periods of isolation shall be considered as a situation similar to a work accident in terms of economic effects.

The measure provides more protection to the beneficiaries because the benefits are higher (75% of the base) in case of work accident than in case of temporary disability (60%). And it is also more advantageous for the companies because the cost is assumed by the social security from the first day of leave - in case of temporary disability, the social security assumes the cost from the 3rd day until the 20th and later on, it assumes the 75% of the cost.

The duration of the exceptional benefit will be determined by the time the sick leave (isolation leave) is registered. However, the date of the causal event will be the date on which the isolation or the illness of the employee is agreed, without prejudice to the fact that the sick leave is issued after that date.

This measure also applies to self-employees registered to any of the social security systems on the date of the causal event.

Use of measure


Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Applies to all workers Applies to all businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Employers' organisations
Social insurance
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Informed Informed
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • Unknown
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown


Social partners were informed about the policy measure, but didn't participate directly in its design or implementation.

Views and reactions

Social partners were somehow consulted or informed.


  • 11 March 2020: Royal Decree Law 6/2020, of 10 March


Eurofound (2020), Periods of isolation assimilated into work accidents in terms of economic benefits, measure ES-2020-11/832 (measures in Spain), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.