Maternity pay
Maternity pay

The following Employment guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Maternity pay
  • Pay during time off for antenatal care
  • Pay during suspension from work
  • Pay following removal of agency worker on maternity grounds
  • SMP—entitlement
  • SMP—continuity of employment
  • SMP—definition of employee
  • SMP—period of entitlement
  • SMP—notification
  • SMP—rate and payment
  • more

FORTHCOMING CHANGE: Proposed new rates for statutory maternity pay (SMP) and maternity allowance, which will be effective from April 2020, have been published by the government. They are £151.20 per week for SMP and maternity allowance. For more information, see News Analysis: Rates of SMP, SSP, Maternity Allowance etc to be increased in April 2020 (9/1/20).
FORTHCOMING CHANGE: Proposed new National Insurance contribution (NIC) rates, limits and thresholds, to take effect from 6 April 2020, have been published in draft form by the government. For the purposes of SMP entitlement, the proposed lower earnings limit from April 2020 will be £120 (increased from £118). For more information, see: LNB News 31/01/2020 51.

Employees may be entitled to various types of payment relating to pregnancy or maternity, such as:

  1. pay during time off for antenatal care (see below)

  2. pay during suspension from work on maternity grounds (see below)

  3. pay following removal of agency worker on maternity grounds (see below)

  4. statutory maternity pay (see below)

  5. contractual maternity pay (see below) and other relevant pay

  6. maternity allowance, payable by the Benefits Agency, with entitlement depending on the individual's previous NI contributions (see below)

Apart from maternity allowance, these payments are generally made by the employer.