Q&As

Will an employee who has interrupted her maternity leave to return to work, but then decides to resume her maternity leave again, retain her entitlement to SMP for the remainder of the 39-week maternity pay period?

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Published on LexisPSL on 28/10/2020

The following Employment Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Will an employee who has interrupted her maternity leave to return to work, but then decides to resume her maternity leave again, retain her entitlement to SMP for the remainder of the 39-week maternity pay period?

The maternity pay period (MPP) is a period of 39 consecutive weeks.

It is not related to entitlement to maternity leave nor to the period of maternity leave the employee applies for or takes. However, it is a condition of entitlement to statutory maternity pay (SMP) that the employee has ‘ceased to work for [the employer]’.

For further information, generally, see Practice Note: Maternity pay.

SMP is payable in respect of each week of the MPP as set out in section 165(1)–(3D) of the Social Security Contributions and Benefits Act 1992, (SSCBA 1992). SMP is not payable in respect of any week during any part of which an employee works under a contract of employment with her employer; for these purposes it does not matter whether the work is under the pre-existing contract or a separate one.

This covers the position where th

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