Can I claim SMP from my second job? Ask the expert

Please can you tell me if I would be entitled to maternity pay from a second job? I work for the same employer for my first (full time) and 2nd (part time) job.

Pregnant woman


Firstly you should have a look at your contracts of employment to see if she may have a contractual right to maternity pay over and above Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP). If the contracts or handbook do not provide any additional rights to SMP for each of the jobs you do. According to HMRC guidelines you will be entitled to SMP if:

  • You have been continuously employed in that job for at least 26 weeks at the end of the ‘Qualifying Week’.
  • The Qualifying week is the 15th week before the expected week of childbirth; and;
  • You have an Average Weekly Earning in that job of £97 or higher.

If you only qualify for SMP for your full-time job, then the time you take off from each of your jobs should be the same (worked out on a pro-rata basis for your part-time job). If you qualify for SMP for both jobs then you may choose to take different amounts of time off for each job.

Laura Livingstone is an employment lawyer for Davenport Lyons in London.

Whilst every care has been taken in compiling this answer, workingmums cannot be held responsible for any errors or omissions. This information is not intended to be a substitute for specific legal advice.

Comments [4]

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi. I am due to have a baby 17th Feb 2015. I have 2 jobs. First job for last 3 yrs …..40 hrs a week.
    My second job is 10hrs a week. I just got email from my second job that I am not gone get SMP because I start to work there no 26 wks …but only 24 :(. I was employed 23rd of May 2014.

    They wrote to me

    At this point she must have been employed by you for a minimum of 26 weeks (04/05/14). This means that she had to be your employee before the 4th May 2014 to qualify.

    She may still be able to claim Maternity Allowance via the Job Centre, we will send you an SMP1 form so that she can try to claim this.

    So my question is: Can I apply for Maternity allowance from Job centre if I still have my first job?

    Editor: It is correct that you have to have been in your job before you became pregnant to qualify for SMP. You cannot claim SMP from your first job and MA from your second, although you can get two lots of SMP if you qualify for both jobs. You would be better off to claim just SMP from your first job.

  • Anonymous says:

    I'm due to have my baby I march 2015, I'm entitled to maternity pay from my main first job.but not from my second because the company don't pay maternity . So will I be able to claim smp in my second job as well as claiming maternity pay from my first job?

    Editor: Do you mean enhanced maternity pay from your first employer? If you qualify for SMP for the second job – you were working there from before you got pregnant to at least the 26th week of your pregnancy and earned at least an average of £111 a week in the eights weeks leading up to the 26th week of your pregnancy – you can get it in addition to the maternity pay you get from your first employer. If you do not qualify for it, however, you cannot get maternity pay from your first employer [which will involve SMP as well as the enhanced element] and Maternity Allowance, which is what women who do not quality for SMP get.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi my daughter is currently 39wks preg and trying to get her head around payment from her 2 jobs, she works in retail contracted at 16hrs per week, plus 30hrs in a nursery, she has relieved confirmation from her 16hr job to say she cannot receive SMP as she not earning enough and to apply for maternity payment from government but not received no confirmation from nursery just told she will receive SMP. We were told few weeks ago through citizens advice that she would b able to receive payments from both her jobs, but now DSS have told her if she going to receive SMP than she can't have maternity payment for her 16hr job please can someone tell me who's right cos she totally confused and stressing out many thanks

    Editor: Women can receive maternity payment for two jobs if they qualify – for instance, they can get two payments of SMP, but they cannot get both SMP and Maternity Allowance so I'm afraid if she only qualifies for SMP in one job she will not be able to get MA from the other one.

  • Anonymous says:

    My first job is a part time job of 18 hrs and the second I was doing 12 hrs and then started more hours 27-30 a week, but I am confused about how I will claim maternity leave. I have worked in both places for more than 4 years.

    Editor: You do not say how many weeks you are pregnant or at what stage in your pregnancy your hours increased in your second job. Your SMP entitlement is calculated on average earnings in the 8-week period preceding the 15th week before your due date [ie around 26th week of pregnancy]. You can claim SMP from more than one job providing you satisfy the qualifying conditions for each job. You can start your maternity leave and/or SMP at different times for each job. Eligibility for SMP depends on the following: you have worked for the same employer for at least 26 weeks by the end of the 15th week before the expected week of childbirth; you are still in your job in the 15th week before your baby is due – even if it’s only for one day that week – or you are off sick or on holiday; and you earn at least £107 per week on average in the eight weeks (if you are paid weekly) or two months (if you are paid monthly) up to the last pay day before the end of the 15th week before your baby is due. 

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