Do I have to pay back maternity pay?

I am currently on maternity leave after having my premature daughter who is now three months old. She has a condition called LCHAD which is quite rare. The problem I now have is I want to leave work and look after her full time as the condition my daughter has requires constant care and her feeding is different to other babies. My work has said I HAVE to come back and work for at least six weeks, otherwise I have to pay back my maternity pay. I have checked my contract and there is no mention of this or any other maternity info (I work for a private healthcare care home). I need some guidance on what my rights are and if I can fight my corner.

Maternity Pay

 

[Information correct as of August 2017]

The answer to your question depends on whether you are paid contractual maternity pay above and beyond the statutory minimum or statutory maternity pay only. I first set out below the answer in the event that you are paid statutory maternity pay only.

Statutory Maternity Pay (“SMP”)

SMP is payable at two different rates:

  1. During the first six weeks of maternity leave, maternity pay is 90% of the employee’s normal weekly earnings.
  2. For the remaining 33 weeks of statutory maternity leave, maternity pay is at the flat rate, which is currently £140.98 or 90% of the employee’s normal weekly earnings per week, if lower.

I am assuming that you meet the qualifying conditions for receipt of SMP since you mention receiving maternity pay and you are on leave currently. If you resign during your maternity leave, this does not affect your entitlement to SMP from your former employer. The company will still be required to pay you your SMP. There is no requirement for you to have to repay any statutory maternity pay in the event that you resign from your employment during your maternity leave and/or a requirement for you to return to work for six weeks after the end of your maternity leave.

Contractual Maternity Pay (“CMP”)

Whilst you will not have to pay SMP, if you are paid CMP, for example, if you are paid full pay for the first eight weeks of your maternity leave instead of 90%, your employer may have specified in the contract what requirements you need to fulfil in order to receive CMP and, equally, may set out whether you will be required to return to work for a set period at the end of the maternity leave in order to be entitled to CMP. Further, your employer may specify circumstances in which CMP will be recoverable.

I note that you say in your e-mail that there is nothing in your contract setting out the circumstances in which your employer can recover maternity pay. However, it may be that your employer has a separate contractual policy (this may even be referred to in your contract of employment) which sets out details in relation to this.

If you are not aware of any such policy, you should contact your employer to ask them on what basis they are asserting that you need to repay your maternity pay unless you come back to work for at least six weeks. Depending on their response and whether there is a contractual right to recover CMP, you may have grounds to challenge the basis upon which they are indicating they will recover contractual maternity pay from you unless your return to work for the specified period.

In any event, even if they do have a contractual right to recover CMP from you, it is only the pay you receive in excess of your SMP that they are able to recover legitimately. They cannot recover SMP that you are eligible to receive, even if you resign during maternity leave. They also cannot force you to return even if they are entitled to recover CMP. It is entirely your decision as to whether you want to return from maternity leave.

Disability discrimination

One further point which is worth considering if the company starts being difficult and insisting that you repay your maternity pay or return to work at the end of your maternity leave, is whether there are any discrimination issues on the basis that you “associated” with a child with a disability. Under the Equality Act 2010 it is unlawful for an employer to discriminate against an employee because of their association with someone with a disability, for example, and as in your case, their child. However, this is a complex area of the law and in the first instance at least it is probably better to try to resolve this matter with your employer without raising the issue of disability discrimination.

Charlotte Mepham helped in the preparation of this answer.




Comments [175]

  • Janette says:

    Hi I am on a contract that finishes in the middle of my maternity leave. If I am paid SMp and omp and the contract is not renewed do I have to pay the omp back? Thank you

    • Mandy Garner

      Mandy Garner says:

      Hi,
      What does your company maternity policy say about redundancy/ending of a contract? Normally, your right to contractual maternity pay normally stops when your contract ends. If you are made redundant you will probably lose your contractual pay from the date of your redundancy and just get SMP for any remaining weeks [you don’t have to pay back SMP once you have qualified for it]. If you are unfairly selected for redundancy because of your pregnancy you will have a claim for unfair dismissal and pregnancy discrimination and that claim will include compensation for loss of contractual maternity pay.

  • Holly says:

    I’m going on maternity leave soon and will get statutory leave only but I noticed in the hand book male staff get a weeks full pay is this fair??

    • Mandy Garner

      Mandy Garner says:

      Hi Holly,
      I don’t understand your question. If you are going on maternity leave, I am presuming you will get SMP, which is 90% of salary for six weeks followed by 33 weeks at the statutory rate. Men are entitled to two weeks’ statutory paternity pay. Your employer may provide an enhanced pay for paternity/maternity pay.
      Best wishes.

  • lindsey nicholls says:

    Hi im currently on mat leave. This is due to end march 5th. I handed my notice in on 9th jan. Heard nothing back so rang hr and they have not recieved my notice. They rang work who put mat leave has 19th jan. They say because i wanted to leave on 9th jan and they paid me after this date i owe a weeks amp. Is this right as i thought wud be paid for 39 weeks smp. Also got 107.85 holiday hours to use. 57.85 hours were not used before i went on mat leave and 50 hours were issued in nov 15. It says got to be used by oct 16. If i stayed would get anothee 50 hours in may 16. How much holiday pay should i recieve.
    Many thanks

  • Varun Bano says:

    Hi
    Actually I were getting my maternity pay every after two weeks but this week I didn’t get my maternity pay, I don’t know why like happen.

    Please tell me why is it happing like this.

    Thanks

  • Andrea says:

    Hello, I am currently on maternity leave and it’s just SMP, I am not due to go back to work until July 16, I do not plan on going back to my currant job as its a long drive from my home, if I hand my notice in now will my SMP stop when I hand my notice in? Or will I have to pay my SMP back at all?

  • Jane says:

    Hi,

    I have question about enhanced SMP. My company pays it if:
    you have worked for the Company for at least 12 months by the start of the fifteenth week before your expected week of childbirth.
    I think I am very close to that date. I have started 1/12 last year, baby is due in March next year. Can you advise of how to calculate that date, please?
    Thanks

  • petra says:

    Hi
    I am planning to go on maternity leave in January. My baby is due on the 6th January and I plan to take my remaining holidays from Dec 12 until Dec 31. Then take a further 2 weeks from my 2016 allowance then go onto the 39 weeks maternity. My company will pay me the SMP (6 weeks on 90% then 33 weeks on SMP)
    If I decide not to come back to work (work place is far away and the we have no help with childcare) and hand in my notice in October (at the end of my maturity leave) will I still be entitled to the pro rata holiday entitlement for 2016? Also I am not sure how to work out my entitlement. (I have 25 days + Bank holidays for every year)
    Thank you for your help & answer.
    Petra

  • Anonymous says:

    I’ve been working in a school continuously for 2 years on several temporary contracts. I earn enough to qualify for SMP but I do not plan to return to work after the baby is born. As school know this they’ve told me I need to hand in my resignation stating 31/08/15 as my leaving date (this is the date my current contract ends). If I do this will I still be able to apply for SMP?

  • Holly Roberts says:

    I have handed my notice in at work during maternity pay, after receiving OMP. I understand that I have to pay this back. My work have deducted the OMP that I owe them from my SMP for this month, leaving me with nothing. Can they do this?

  • Anon says:

    I started working where I am on the 10/08/14 and due to have my baby on the 16/08/15. I only earn between £80-£100 per week. I just wondered what maternity I’m entitled to, I also don’t plan on returning to my job after my maternity leave.

  • Anonymous says:

    I wonder if you can help me. I have been receiving SMP from my previous employer, but now having dramas since commencing new employment. I started back at work Dec 14 and informed my previous employer by both email and phone call. I have found that this has continued and I am getting taxed on it. I have been pulling my hair out at trying to get my previous employer to stop this but it ain't happened until this month. They are now asking me to pay back 3 months SMP plus the tax. Is this right ? I've been paying tax on both my wages and SMP.

    Editor: Ring the HMRC employee helpline on 0845 30 21 479. Your SMP should have stopped the week you started your new job.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am expecting my first child and I do not want to return to work after the baby arrives. I have been working continuously for my employer for 7 years and plan on working up until around 7 months. If I resign at 7 months pregnant, am i still entitled to SMP?

    Editor: As long as you are there past the end of the 26th week of your pregnancy and satisfy the earnings criteria [after April you will need to have earned an average of at least £112 a week in the eight weeks leading up to the 26th week of your pregnancy] you should qualify for SMP whatever happens after that.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I am due back at work now after having 9 months maternity leave. My work didn't pay my maternity pay as they said I earn to little to do so. So the government paid me. I have been in touch with my boss a few times about shifts and wen t start back so I can't sort childcare out. But after looking into childcare for 2 boys it works out at 600 pm my wage us only 530pm it's just not worth me going back. Any suggestions what to do?

    Editor: Have you checked your entitlement to tax credits, etc? You can check online at http://www.turn2us.org.uk. Also if you have a partner and they are entitled to childcare vouchers you can get money off childcare.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have worked at my current job since May 2012 and am very happy there. However during the time that I was pregnant we were informed that the company would be closing our branch office. The nearest office is 40 minutes away from me (instead of 10 minutes away). The closing day of our branch was 31st may and that was the day I went on maternity leave.

    I have been told that, if there is a position available for me at the end of my maternity leave, I can continue my employment at the new office. However, considering that my eldest daughter has now started primary school and I have an infant to put into nursery, any flexible working hours would not cover my childcare costs and travel costs. It is becoming likely that I may not be able to return on this basis.

    I have always indicated that I would like to return to my job however the promise of a position there is not certain. My main question is this.. If I wait for my employers to get back to me, and there is no job available for me, would I be eligible for redundancy pay? I started working there on 8th may 2012 and qualified for redundancy on 8th may 2014. If they offer me a position and I turn it down then I wouldn't be eligable..?

    Thanks in advance

    Editor: Our HR expert Sandra Beale says: It depends if there is a flexibility clause in the employment contract that would allow the employer to relocate you.  If not, then really you should have been made redundant when the office closed and a conversation about redundancy will now need to take place it seems when you are about to return to work.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have an employee returning to work after 39 weeks maternity leave. There is no written contract, only verbal. She was contracted to work 2 days per week and then 5 days per week to cover another employees maternity leave then back to 2 days per week. She then became pregnant.
    I had to employ someone temporary to cover her maternity leave, at a higher rate of pay. 3 weeks ago we agreed she would return to work 2 days per week.
    This employee has now told me she can only work a Saturday because of childcare costs. I informed her this does not suit the needs of the business and simply would not work and asked her what she wanted to do.
    She then told me there was not a lot else she could do.
    I then discovered she has been discussing her and other staffs rates of pay with clients and also discussing the business with people who have no connection with the business.
    Frankly, after hearing this I don't want her to return to work.
    I simply need to know what my obligations are to her, and what her obligations are to me.

    Editor: Has she put in a flexible working request to reduce her hours? She would need to do so to reduce her hours. If you agreed two days you do not need to agree to one day, but you would have to give a good business reason. You are allowed to turn down a request on eight grounds, but must show you have given the request due consideration to see if it could work – see https://www.workingmums.co.uk/advice-and-support/career-toolkit/7890872/extending-flexible-working.thtml

  • Anonymous says:

    I have not yet set a date for my maternity but i have spoken to my employer about it. Now i am a barmaid and have no written contract, my employer has told me that she is not obliged to pay my SMP because she is a small business but i was under the impression that she will claim it all back? What shall i do if she refuses to pay me and i dont want to return to work after the baby, will i have to pay it all back to her??

    Editor: Everyone who is an employee of an organisation has a contract and you should have been issued with a written one. If you have worked with your employer from just before you got pregnant to at least the 26th week of your pregnancy and have earned an average of at least £111 a week in the eight weeks leading up to the 26th week of your pregnancy you would qualify for SMP via your employer. They claim most of this back from the government. If you have any problems getting your employer to pay contact HMRC. You do not have to pay back SMP whatever happens after the 26th week of your pregnancy. If you do not qualify for SMP, your employer should issue you with a form which you can use to claim Maternity Allowance if you qualify [for this you have to have worked for 26 weeks at least in the 66 weeks before your due date and to have earned at least £30 in any 13 weeks in the 66 weeks]. You can claim MA through your local JobCentre Plus or online.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi. I am currently 26 weeks pregnant. Due to childcare issues I'm going to have to give up my job. I've been there since March 2015. Do I still qualify for SMP?

    Editor: If you were there before you got pregnant and are still there at the end of the 26th week of your pregnancy and have earned an average of at least £111 in the eight weeks leading up to the 26th week of your pregnancy you would qualify for SMP whatever happens subsequently.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have been back into work following maturnity leave for 2 months and I have now decided that I want leave to be a stay at home mum. Would I have to pay anything back?

    Editor: Are you talking about SMP? You do not have to pay back SMP if you do not return to work.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi My paid maternity is about to finish on the 30th of April, and the remaining of the unpaid maternity will last till 1st of August. I'm thinking of resigning although I have been with my employer since October 2009. Now, my contract states that I should give at least 1 week notice if wish to terminate the employment. However in the letter from the employer about SMP entitlement I have found information that 1 week per year served is expected from me. Now my contract is so called a zero hour contract- with no hours guaranteed. So if I am right I should stick to the contract and give at least 1 week. If I am right then how to do it in a diplomatic way? Also what about the holidays I have accrued?

    Editor: Your employer should give you any holiday accrued up to the point of you leaving employment and you have to serve your contractual notice.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I am thinking on handing my notice in but I still want to get my holidays my end of maternity is 28th April 2015 so when would be best to hand my notice in and if I do would I have to pay back SMP.

    Editor: You would have to serve your contractual notice so if you have accrued holiday you could add that to the end of your leave, if your employer allows this. Alternatively, you could hand in your notice earlier before your maternity leave ends. You should be paid any accrued holiday in your final payment. You would not have to pay back SMP.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am currently on maternity leave, I was made redundant on the 17th of August 2014. If I have been paid the full smp allowance of 39 weeks. What is the earliest date I can return to work? I will be self employed. The company I worked for has since gone in to liquidation.

    Editor: You can do self employed work at any time during maternity leave without SMP being affected.

  • Anonymous says:

    Yes I work for a Pharma giant and everything is done by the book. We have had a consultation period, but the new company is refusing to show me a job description. The policy states I would need to pay it back, but this seems like an unusual circumstance to me in that I will no longer work for them. I hoped they had a moral obligation to me after 10 years service and palming me off to another company not to be mean and make me pay it back, it is after all their fault that I don't wish to return now! Wishful thinking maybe. Thank you.

  • Anonymous says:

    Yes I work for a Pharma giant and everything is done by the book. We have had a consultation period, but the new company is refusing to show me a job description. The policy states I would need to pay it back, but this seems like an unusual circumstance to me in that I will no longer work for them. I hoped they had a moral obligation to me after 10 years service and palming me off to another company not to be mean and make me pay it back, it is after all their fault that I don't wish to return now! Wishful thinking maybe. Thank you.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am currently on maternity leave, my company has informed me that they are outsourcing me under TUPE. I'm not happy about returning to work for the new company, there are changes to conditions such as a uniform to wear and clocking in and out, also I don't retain my benefits. I've been told if I don't like it I have to resign. I'm feeling quite stressed about it and feel I have no choice but to resign. Company policy states I would need to pay back my company pay (even though I would no longer be working for them for 6 months). I received 18 weeks full pay and am taking extended leave to a year. Although this maybe legal it doesn't seem moral to make me pay it back. Do I have a leg to stand on? Thank you for your time.

    Editor: Have you been consulted on the TUPE process – see https://www.gov.uk/transfers-takeovers/consulting-and-informing? You should consult your company maternity policy with regard to paying back enhanced pay and redundancy.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have recently returned to work after 9months off SMP. I have now found another job, will I have to pay back my SMP?

    Editor: You do not have to pay back SMP if you take another job on return to work.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi im on mat leave just now receiving smp ends 9 feb. Agreed to go back to work 30 mar after aďding on hols. Ive been offered a job with a different company if i hand my notice in is it correct that i wont have to pay back any mat pay? Thanks

    Editor: You don't have to pay back SMP if you don't return, but it will stop as soon as you start the new job.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hello there, I am currently an Agency Temp whom has been employed in the same role for over 3 years. I am due to finish on Mat leave in 4 weeks and know that I am entitled to SMP for 39 weeks. The agency have informed me that there is no requirement for me to return to work after my maternity leave therefore I am technically unemployed but receiving SMP. I wondered if there are any legal restrictions whilst receiving SMP that prohibits me from returning to Education whilst receiving these payments? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Editor: There are no restrictions on studying with regard to SMP. You would only lose SMP if you started another paid job during maternity leave.

  • Anonymous says:

    I've been on MA and I'm due to go back to work soon but I don't think I'm gonna be able to go back as childcare cost to much do I need to pay back the ma.

    Editor: You do not have to pay back MA if you don't return to work.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hello, I am on maternity leave, due to return on 2nd feb. Have been in talks with employer (a school) regarding how they have failed to keep in touch with me, and refused my part time request. They offered me an alternative position of 32 hrs a week but the time I would have to arrive in the mornings (8.30) will be seriously detrimental to my family (I have twins, plus an older child). I would be up against the traffic trying to get to work for this time every day, and would still need full time childcare plus afterschool (nursery opens at 8am). I feel this would seriously compromise my family life and offer me a very poor work:life balance. I have a 3 week phased return starting at 9am and although this is possible to try, I am very anxious, worried & concerned about the revert to 8.30. I do not feel at all ready to tackle this and its making me feel ill.
    My maternity pay was SMP + 12 wks Enhanced and I took this because at the time of going on Mat leave, circumstances at work were different, however things have now changed dramatically, with a different leadership and my duties are no more.
    I am aware that I will have to repay the enhancement if I do resign, do you know how this will be expected as I have heard from a previous lady who did not return that it was expected in one lump sum. My first argument to this is that I did not receive it in one lump sum so I shouldnt be expected to repay it like that, but if I have no employment I will find it difficult to repay it at all!!
    My second point on this is that it states in my maternity letter and policy that it will only be repayable if I do not return to local government employment…I feel this is a very grey area as the council say I have to return to my original job and the school say they no longer buy into the council HR services as they are an Academy (they were already an academy when I went on maternity leave so surely the letter and policy are as valid now as they were 9 months ago??). I wondered whether I would be required to repay if I went to work for another school instead???
    ANyway, lots of questions and I hope you are able to help me further thanks.

    Editor: Our employment lawyer Emma Wellard says:

    In terms of your flexible working request, your employer is under a duty to handle such requests reasonably – weighing up your needs against the needs of the school.  It should have provided you with some justification as to why it was unable to accommodate your flexible working request, as it can only refuse for one or more of the eight specific grounds prescribed by statute.  You should also have been given the right to appeal against the outcome.



    I note the school has proposed an alternative part time arrangement although you are concerned that this will not suit you (I am assuming your original start time was 9am before going on maternity leave).  You could agree with your employer to trial the 8.30am start for a reasonable period of time to see whether it could work, or alternatively consider whether there is another alternative proposal that you could put forward by way of a compromise between the two patterns.



    Ultimately, however, if the school has complied with its duties, i.e. handled your request reasonably (which includes basing its decision on the correct facts), responded within the 3 month timeframe and only refused your request on one of the prescribed grounds, then it is entitled to reject the request.  In that case, you would still be entitled to return to your role as it was before you went on maternity leave, of course (or accept any alternative proposal).  On the basis that the school has offered an alternative flexible arrangement, I do not think there are strong grounds here for a discrimination claim.



    After maternity leave you are generally entitled to return to the same position.  The only exception to this is if you have taken more than 26 weeks’ leave and it is not reasonably practicable for you to return to the same position.  In this instance, your employer should offer you another suitable and appropriate role on terms and conditions that are no less favourable.  On the assumption you are returning to the same position, you say your “duties are no more”.  This makes me query whether there has been a breach of either an express or implied term of your contract which might give rise to a constructive dismissal claim but I would need much more detail to advise on this point fully.



    I would expect the schedule of repayment of the enhanced maternity pay to be set out in the policy.  If it is silent on this point then I would need to review the whole policy to determine where you stand.  Even if this policy does provide for lump sum repayment, your employer may agree to a revised, less punitive arrangement.  As to the issue of whether or not the repayment is not required if you stay within local government employment, this is difficult to answer without seeing the documentation.  It may be the case that they are using antiquated documents that have not been updated since the school became an Academy but from your perspective if the school is looking to enforce repayment on the basis of the document it gave you, then equally you should be able to rely on the terms of that document that relate to non-repayment.



    Do get in touch directly [ring 01926 886688] if you would like more detailed advice.

  • Anonymous says:

    how along after maternity you can fall pregnant again, because I was pregnant 2013, so I suspect am pregnant again this year. so now I worried whether they are not going to discriminate me on that.

    Editor: They should not discriminate against you for getting pregnant or they can be sued.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have taken the full 12 mth maternity allowance and was not planning on returning to work. I understand that you do not have to repay SMP but does this include the 13 week additional maternity pay?? There isn't anything in my contract regarding repayment and would have to speak to my manager to see the staff handbook and she will want to know why. Also can I return but take my holidays and resign whilst on holiday and not have to pay anything back??

    Editor: I don't think you are talking about statutory pay. If it is occupational pay you need to check your organisation's policy.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi Im currently on maternity leave, I believe I'm being underpaid, I've phone hmrc but hey haven't got back to me and my employer isn't helpful.. And shrugs everything off.
    Basically I was on maternity with my first dec 2012 and went back to work dec2013 the I fell pregnant again and went back on maternity october2014. (Same employer been then since 2010) with my first pregnancy I was getting 135 a week now I'm get 104 a week I went back on 36hours so that's not even 90% of what I was earning am I getting paid wrong, or is it because I've already don't one maternity. Also if I was to go back to work now (& gave up maternity) do I have to go back to same employer or can I go somewhere else as there is a lot of problems with my old workplace don't knownif I can face them again! Thanks in advance.

    Editor: Your first maternity leave should not affect your second. Are you talking about SMP or Maternity Allowance? If SMP, this is determined on your average weekly earnings in the 8 weeks leading up to the 26th week of your pregnancy and is generally 90% of salary for the first six weeks and then £138.18 or 90% of average weekly earnings, whichever is lower, for the following 33 weeks. You will not have to pay back SMP or MA if you do not return to your original job. You can ring HMRC's employee helpline number on 0845 30 21 479 if your employer is not being cooperative. 

  • Anonymous says:

    Hello I was not entitled to smp from my employer so I claimed it from the job centre if I do not return to my job will I have to pay this back?

    Editor: Do you mean Maternity Allowance? There is no need to pay this back if you do not return.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I have recently returned to work after maternity leave, which I was paid SMP during this time. If I decide to leave my job now (have only been back for 8 weeks) would I have to repay any of the SMP? Or would there be any other things to be aware of? Many thanks

    Editor: You do not have to pay back SMP. You will just have to serve your contractual notice. 

  • Anonymous says:

    I'm a teacher and was due to return to work last week after 52 weeks of maternity leave. A few days before my return the school refused my request to work part time on my return. My son was born with a rare genetic condition and requires lots if therapies and medical input resulting in me not being able to fulfil my previous job. My only options are to resign or to ask for an additional unpaid time off . I dont see me able to do my job for at least 3-4 years sothink my best option is to resign. However I 'm meant to give 2 months notice to resign and need to work 3 months to avoid paying back the enhanced maternity pay. Is there any way I can avoid paying back the enhanced part of my maternity pay?

    Editor: You don't say on what grounds your request was turned down. An employer can only turn a request down on one of eight grounds and must show they have given the request due consideration – see https://www.workingmums.co.uk/advice-and-support/career-toolkit/7890872/extending-flexible-working.thtml. If you do not believe this is the case, you can appeal. You could try and negotiate a situation whereby you would not pay back the enhanced pay or you could offer to return part time and take any accrued holiday to make up a full week until the two months have passed or indeed add any accrued leave to your maternity leave. You could also take unpaid parental leave. 

  • Anonymous says:

    My company ended my contract as I was due to go on maternity leave. I recieved my full 39 weeks in one go and was taxed over 1000 on it. Will I be entitled to a tax rebate? And also if I start back at the same company before my 39 weeks is up will I have to repay any money?

    Editor: If you go back to work then your tax refund will come back at that point. If you do not, then you will have to wait until April 2015 to get the overpayment. When you return to work, your new employer will ask you for your P45. They will contact the tax office and request a new tax code for you. This should automatically trigger your tax refund. If you do go back before the 39 weeks you will have to pay back the remaining SMP.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have been back to work for six weeks after my maternity pay has finished x I was receiving 90% pay fit the first six weeks then the lower rate that you previously stated x if I was to end my employment! would it have to pay any money back to my employer

    Editor: That sounds like SMP so you would not have to pay it back if you do not return.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi my Ma 39w pay till 4 march but i got 16 days off my holiday i entitle for received them if i leave job? How long before i need let my boss know i no want back to work thanks.

    Editor: I'm not sure I entirely understand, but you do continue to accrue annual leave on maternity leave in the normal way. You would have to give your contractual notice.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I am handing in my notice after being on maternity leave! I am going to give a months notice which will take me up to my 52 weeks maternity leave! Nearing the end of the year. Holiday is not allowed to be carried over, will I still be entitled to holiday pay for the days acquired whilst on maternity leave or will I have to pay back holiday!

    Thank you.

    Editor: You continue to accrue annual leave in the normal way while on maternity leave. Employers should allow you to either tack this on to the end or beginning of your leave – see http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/entitlements-during-statutory-maternity-leave

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I have a rather unique situation which I hope you could advice.

    I am working under a tier 2 dependent's visa (intra company transfer long term staff) and obviously my employment is tagged to my husband's job here. I have been informed that I qualified for SMP, being employed for 11weeks before estimated due date and have been contributing to national insurance for more than 1year.

    However, it is expected that my husband's stint in the UK is ending soon, and it would be halfway through my 39weeks of paid SMP. I would have to leave my employment then (as I will no longer have a tier 2 dependents work visa anyway)

    Does my company have to pay me the full sum of SMP worth 39weeks at my resignation and fulfilment of notice period? Or does my company only pay my SMP till the day I leave the UK?

    Thank you.

    Editor: You would need to ring the HMRC SMP helpline number to clarify this - 0845 3021479.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi i receiued maternity allowance when there finish i think no return my job due childcost to much i have 4 kids 10 7 5 y and 4m baby! I need pay all money back?

    Editor: You do not have to pay back MA if you do not return to work.

  • Anonymous says:

    hi am receiving spm at the moment my son it 5 months old and I just found out am pregnant again and cant go back to work due to child care will I have to pay all my maternity pay back? thanks

    Editor: Do you mean SMP? You do not have to pay back SMP if you do not return to work after maternity leave.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I receive smp from 26th Jan 2014 and I can't go back to work due to child care costs do I have to pay it back if I give notice but how much notice do I give thanks

    Editor: You don't have to pay back SMP.

  • Anonymous says:

    Thanks for your response, i work full time permanent. working permanent for now will really be difficult for me so am thinking of working as a bank staff. That means changing my contract as you said but do you think they will accept that since i have been on maternity leave with their enhancement? Thank you.

    Editor: All you can do is try to negotiate with them. It depends also on the terms of your enhanced package and what it says about return to work.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, am on maternity leave now due to return to work on October will they accept to give me relief work cus of childcare, my sister has agreed to help me with child care whenever she is available. Can my company accept since i still love my work. Thank you.

    Editor: Can you explain a bit more what hours you used to work and what kind of hours you are seeking when you go back? If you are simply wanting to reduce your hours, you can put in a flexible working request and your employer will have to give it serious consideration – see https://www.workingmums.co.uk/advice-and-support/career-toolkit/7890872/extending-flexible-working.thtml. If you want to change your contract from permanent to relief cover you would need to negotiate this with your employer.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have 2 part time jobs and am currently on maternity leave. I am being paid SMP by one of my employers, but intend to resign (from the employer who is paying my SMP)before the end of SMP period and go back to work for my other p/t employer. Am I still entitled to SMP for the remainder of the 39 week period or does SMP stop when I go back to work with my other employer.

    Editor: If you only qualify for SMP from one employer you can continue to work for the employer who does not pay you SMP, providing you were employed by that employer in the 15th week before your baby was due.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I am being paid smp by my employer and I have applied to do a college course while on maternity leave, is this allowed or will my smp stop?

    Editor: SMP should not be affected as you would not be earning anything.

  • Anonymous says:

    Please help! I am on maternity leave at the moment and have been since December the 24th due to return in September I said to my boss I will be returning to the job, I have no contract and didn't sign anything to say I would return only by mouth, I have had second thoughts on returning to job because they didn't treat me very well when I was pregnant and caused me a lot of stress would I have to return my maternity pay (smp) back to them?

    Editor: You can hand in your notice in the usual way. You do not need to pay back SMP and it would only stop if you started a new job.

  • Anonymous says:

    Please help! I have been made redundant. Ive been on SMP for 20weeks and on my redundancy pay slip they have paid me 19 weeks SMP even tho I always planned to return to work after 21 weeks. So to date they have paid me the full 39 weeks SMP even tho by the time I was made redundant I will have only bee off 20 weeks. My question is if I start a new job would I have to pay some of the 19weeks SMP back?

    Editor: If you start a new job before the 39 weeks you would have to pay back the SMP from the week you start a new job, ie if you start a new job at 25 weeks you would have to pay back 14 weeks as normally your SMP would stop the week you started a new job.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hello, I currently work p/t on a zero hours contract & my hours are always changing. Can you tell me how will they work out if I'll get SMP or SMA. Also, iv never sat down with anyone about my maternity leave and I'm feeling a little in the dark, iv got to fill in lots of paperwork and have been given no timescale when things have to be completed & I'm getting a bit worried. My manager is not very helpful & is on leave for the next 4 weeks. I'm 25 weeks & totally stressed!

    Editor: SMP is worked out based on your average weekly earnings in the 8 weeks leading up to the 26th week of pregnancy. If those earnings are not £111 or above you will not qualify for SMP. You also have to have been working in your current organisation from before you got pregnant and have to still be there by the 26th week of pregnancy. If not, you should qualify for Maternity Allowance which you can claim through your local JobCentre Plus. Here is information on timescales for applying for SMP etc - https://www.gov.uk/maternity-pay-leave/how-to-claim

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I am due to have my baby in Feb 2015 and my company holiday entitlement runs from January-December (30 days). If I take my 30 days holiday from the end of January and then start my maternity leave and then decide to resign at some point during my maternity leave- will I have to pay anything back?

    Editor: Is that holiday accrued during maternity leave or before maternity leave? If you are taking leave that you have not yet accrued, you may have this deducted in your final pay cheque.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I have just returned to work after 9 months off on maternity leave, I did receive SMP and the company maternity pay. My contract says I have to return for 3 months or id have to pay the company maternity pay back, I want to leave after these three months are up and am due to hand in my notice on the start of the last month, what would happen though if I fell ill during these 3 months, would I have to work longer to leave?

    Editor: What is the precise wording of the enhanced pay policy? 

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I left my job in March 2014 after 10 years and I am due to give birth in October, I do not currently work, am I entitled to maternity allowance or not. Also I left work in order to assist my husband with a new business however I'm not employed by him and he doesn't pay any national insurance as he currently doesn't pay himself a salary.

    Editor: See earlier reply.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I left my job in March 2014 after 10 years and I am due to give birth in October, I do not currently work, am I entitled to maternity allowance or not. Also I left work in order to assist my husband with a new business however I'm not employed by him and he doesn't pay any national insurance as he currently doesn't pay himself a salary.

    Editor: You may be entitled to MA. To qualify you need to have worked for 26 weeks in the 66 leading up to your due date either in an employed or self employed capacity. Are you earning in your role with your husband? You need to have earned at least £30 in any 13-week period during the 66 weeks.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi im just starting my maturnity leave today but i cant go back to work if i inform them will i recieve my smp in a lump sum or monthly and will i be able to claim benifits once iv give my notice in? Thanks

    Editor: You will still get SMP if you resign and it may well be paid in a lump sum, which might have tax implications as SMP is taxable. You can reclaim overpaid tax in due course, but you cannot reclaim NI payments. To find out about benefits you may be entitled to contact http://www.turn2us.org.uk

  • Anonymous says:

    I am due back into work after maternity leave. I have to go back to work for 13 weeks in order to keep my company maternity pay. Do holidays and sickness count as being back in work?

    Editor: You would need to check your maternity policy on this as each company differs. Usually holiday etc will count as being back at work.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am currently on maternity leave from a care home, I get smp 4weekly from them. I have given a dat to return as 21st July 2014, but I really do not want to go back at all, mainly as it is a 60mile round trip for one shift. I have heard I would have to pay back my maternity pay which I cannot afford to do so. Is this right? This is the only reason I am going back so I dont have to repay it, if I do not have to I will resign.if I do how long would I have to go back for so I didn't have to repay it. Thanks

    Editor: If you have only received SMP [generally six weeks at 90% pay followed by 33 weeks at £138.18] you do not have to pay any money back if you do not return. If you have received enhanced maternity pay above SMP from your employer [if they have a contractual maternity pay scheme], you may have to pay back the money if you don't return. You would need to check your company's maternity policy.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi

    I am not returning after a full year of maternity leave. I had 6 weeks at 90% and then 33 weeks at statutory. I also get ten days pay for optional 'keeping in touch'
    What do I have to pay back?

    Editor: That sounds like Statutory Maternity Pay so you would not have to pay back anything if you did not return.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I am on marterity and am till november I get the Zane marterity pay as govement pay by my employer do I have to goback to work ,

    Editor: If you are talking about SMP, you do not have to pay it back if you do not return. If your organisation has their own maternity pay scheme, you need to check your contract.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I'm due to go on maternity leave in July I do not qualify from work so I'm going through the job center if I choose not to go bk because I can't find away of it benefiting my family and being able to afford childcare will I have to pay it back to job center if I give 2 months notice of not going back to work?

    Editor: You don't have to pay back Maternity Allowance if you don't return to work.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have been back at work for 2 months now in a new job. I have just realised I am still being paid SMP. What will happen?

    Editor: You need to inform HMRC as soon as possible and you will have to refund the SMP you have been paid. Your SMP should have stopped the week you started your new job.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi,

    ok here is my question, I gave birth to my little boy in march and I was with my job for only 6 months and so my maternity leave didn't fall under the FMLA act, it was considered Short term disability, well I have been back to my job now for a month , but Im considering leaving my job because of personal issues, anyway will I have to pay back for my short term disability since I want to leave and I have only been back to work for a month.

    Editor: I think you are based in the US. We only cover legislation regarding maternity leave in the UK. You would have to check the terms of your organisation's policy on disability pay.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have been in my job since beginning of March this year, my baby is due in Feb. Am I entitled to maternity pay?

    Editor: If you got pregnant after you started the job, are still employed as of the 26th week of pregnancy and are earning on average at least £109 a week in the eight weeks leading up to the 26th week of pregnancy, you will qualify for SMP. Otherwise you should qualify for Maternity Allowance which you can claim from your local JobCentre Plus.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hiya, I'm in the process of looking at the maternity policy. It states – During Stage 2 you will receive half salary payments provided you return to work for a minimum of 3 months following your maternity leave period. If you decide not to return to work you will need to give notice in the normal way as your notice period still applies. If you have already received half pay you will be required to repay it (but not the SMP).

    Does this mean that if I go back part time or on reduced hours then I will have to pay back the money?
    many thanks

    Editor: As long as you go back, you will not have to repay the money.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I have been on mat leave since December and receive SMP however I am planning to resign before the end of my maternity leave in order to start self-employment. From your previous posts I understand that I may continue to receive statutory maternity pay till and that this is not affected by any earnings I may make due to being self-employed. However I have been accruing annual leave since January with my current company. Will I receive this as payment in lieu in my final pay at the stat maternity pay rate or my previous full salary rate? Many thanks.

    Editor: Any holiday pay accrued will be paid at the normal rate, as it would be if you were at work.

  • Anonymous says:

    Sorry not sure i understand. If i resign on mat leave and like you say i have to give 3 months notice, what pay will i receive for the 3 months notice? If i say resign on 19th may i should still be employed until 19th august so would i receive nothing from now till 5th july then have to go back to work on 5th july to receive full pay?

    Editor: You’re entitled to your normal hourly pay rate during your notice period, as set out in your contract of employment, for any time that you’re on maternity, paternity or adoption leave.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi. I am currently on my 10th month of maternity leave and my 12 months is up on 5th july. My notice period is 3 months. I am currently on nil pay. If i resign now will i get paid my 3 months notice at full pay? Or would i get nothing from now till 5th july and then full pay from 5th juky onwards? Could they ask me to work my notice period even though i have said i wanted to take 12 months maternity pay?

    Editor: You are still legally obliged to give contractual notice while on maternity leave.

  • Anonymous says:

    My contract states I have to go back for 3 months so I don't have to pay any extra pay I received. I returned back to work for a month but have now been signed off on the sick and I'm not sure how long this will be. What is the procedure now, do I have to still pay it back?

    Editor: You would have to check your maternity policy on this as they all vary.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, was wondering if you were able to help!
    I've been on maternity for 24 weeks and have decided not to return to my current employment as its no longer suitable with having a child. I have been accepted for a new job and able to start when i need too. I was being paid by statutory maternity pay and from what i understand from here i will not have to pay it back. But who do i need to contact to inform them i will be returning back to work?.

    Editor: You should inform your old employer and serve your contractual notice. Your SMP will stop as soon as you start the new job.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am a teacher and have worked for my school for 2 years. If I hand in my notice ie. plan not to return to work after having the baby, do I have any entitlement to maternity pay? Or is maternity pay only for people who plan to return to work? I am suffering from stress and anxiety and I'm worried about the effect it's having on the baby, so I'm trying to work out my options now. Thank you for any help you can provide. I know things in teaching can be different to other workplaces.

    Editor: Do you get SMP or occupational maternity leave? If SMP and you have passed your 26th week of pregnancy you will get SMP no matter what happens afterwards. For occupational maternity leave you will have to check your maternity policy – often you have to pay back the OMP part of maternity pay [not the SMP part] if you do not return at the end of maternity leave.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have returned to work but am leaving to work for their Arms Length Management Company (it manages their housing stock) but I have had to repay my OMP in one lump sum out of my final salary. They said because I'm being paid for accrued annual leave it won't leave me without money but I have increased childcare costs this month and potentially not being paid next month because of payroll dates so I may not have enough money to live off in reality. If I'm working for their ALMO (they own it and their payroll dept will continue to pay me) have they been unfair making me pay it back but also in one lump sum? Thank you.

    Editor: Our HR expert Sandra Beale says it depends on what your maternity policy states.  You may be able to negotiate staggered payment so you may like to try that.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have returned back to work after 6 months maternity – I have been back to my full time position for 2 months now – Is there a time I have to leave it until I can apply for another job if I was to get another job would I have to pay them back my Maternity pay?

    Editor: If you were on SMP you will have nothing to pay back. If you were on contractual maternity pay you need to check your organisation's maternity policy to see if you have to pay back any maternity pay if you do not return to your original job and for how long that applies after you are back.

  • Anonymous says:

    I haven't handed my notice in yet. I go on maternity leave on the 14th June and I am now 26 pregnant. ACAS said that if I hand my notice in before the 14th June as the date I have now told them I will be starting maternity leave I will then not be eligible for maternity pay but that seems to go against everything else I have read regarding the qualifying week being week 26 of pregnancy.
    I have to give me months notice.

    Editor: If you have completed your 26 weeks and resign after that you should get SMP – see http://www.slatergordon.co.uk/media/340271/maternity-rights.pdf. However, ACAS is correct if you are referring to enhanced maternity pay.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have read all the posts above but when I phoned the maternity helpline they said that if I had already told the company when I would be going on maternity leave and then handed my notice in I wouldn't be entitled to SMP even though I am 26 weeks pregnant and worked at the company for a year and a half. Are they right?

    Editor: When did you hand in your notice [at what week of your pregnancy] and are you still at the company?

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi,
    I've been off of work for 9 months, due to return in June after a full year. I've been unfortunate and been ill throughout my leave with a postnatal illness. This has left me on medication, and the thought of going back to my stressful high powered job makes me feel so anxious.
    Work know I've been unwell, hence taking the full year, but I'm now debating whether to go back at all.
    I'd like to know if I would have to go back legally for any reasons without warning? As I'd like to avoid this if possible. Or can I just talk to them and not return at all?
    Thanks.

    Editor: You would have to give your contractual notice, but, given your situation, you may be able to negotiate with your employer. If you have just had SMP, you would be fine. If you have had contractual maternity leave you would have to check your contract to see if you to pay this back if you don't return. 

  • Anonymous says:

    hi, im 27 weeks pregnant and have been employed since september 2013 with my local council.i have been on sick for the last two weeks. i think i am entitled to smp. i had planed to take my leave on may 23rd however i will be taking it on april 6th instead. the amount id recieve from smp is hardly any difference from what id get if i had ma. so im unsure wheather to just had my notice in and get ma, as i do not intend going back to work after having my baby anyway.

    Editor: If you are 27 weeks' pregnant and qualify for SMP, you will already be eligible as you only have to be in work until the 26th week of your maternity leave. You will not be able to apply for MA if you already qualify for SMP.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi…I have a member of staff who went on Maternity leave in March last year, we paid the normal maternity pay of 6 weeks at 90% and then 33 weeks…we then allowed her to tag her holidays on at the end of her Maternity pay and that finished about 3 weeks ago, she returned to work for 6hrs on Saturday and then handed in her resignation today to be effective from the day previous! she now says she should have some holiday pay due to her, can this be correct??

    Editor: She would continue to accrue annual leave as normal during maternity leave so if she has outstanding leave owed it would be correct.

  • Anonymous says:

    hi do I have to repay smp if I return back to work after 52 weeks off and work my notice?

    Editor: No, you do not have to repay SMP, even if you don't return, but you may have to work your notice.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, i am currently on mat leave and want to return to work on a part time basis. If they refuse to give me part time.. Do i need to pay back my maternity pay?

    Editor: If it is SMP, you don't have to pay it back. If it is contractual maternity pay check your maternity policy,

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I just need to know my company asked me to write a letter to say I was pregnant and when I will be due back from maternity. I will be getting smp but if i put a date down when I will be going back and change my mind about going back do I need to pay back smp and when can In hand on my notice, they do not give maternity packages.

    Editor: You can change the date you return to work, but you must give eight weeks' notice. Once you qualify for SMP you do not have to pay it back whatever happens after the 26th week of your pregnancy. You have to give your contractual notice if you resign on maternity leave.

  • Anonymous says:

    I will be receiving Occupational Maternity Pay for 8 weeks full pay from June 2014 and then 18 weeks half pay + SMP, then remaining 13 weeks just SMP. In the meantime I want to start full time study, and after my mat leave finished just go back to work 1 day a week for a couple of months as per my contract requirement. Can I go and start a full time course at university while receiving SMP? it is an NHS funded course so I will be also getting some NHS bursary payments and a student loan.

    Editor: If you get a bursary for your Uni course, it isn't treated as salary so it doesn't impact on your SMP.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I'm currently 4 months into receiving ma but would like to hand my notice in at work as they have informed me that they have postponed my probation from when I told them I was pregnant until the day I go back and I feel it will be too awkward if I return. Can i still claim ma if I quit?

    Editor: Yes, your MA will continue unless you start a new job, in which case it will stop the week you start a new job.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I am currently on maternity leave and my SMP is due to finish in July this year. I have handed in my notice to my employer (where I am receiving the SMP from) I have recently got a new job and I start in April, what happens to my maternity pay? Do I need to contact my old employer to say I have got a new job so they can stop my SMP?

    Thanks

    Editor: You need to inform your old employer. Your SMP will stop the week you start your new job.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hey im currently on maternity leave due to go back in april but I dont want to go back to work but I am worried to that im goin to have to pay. I have been on maternity leave for 9 months now. Do I just need to ring them and say Im noy coming back?

    Editor: You need to give your full contractual notice even if you are on maternity leave.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, my contract states that I must return to work for a minimum of 3 months at the end of my maternity leave in order to retain my enhanced maternity pay. It says if I resign from the company and do not work for the minimum 3 month period following my return to work I will be obliged to repay the company the difference between SMP and the enhanced maternity pay. My contractual notice is 3 months. If I was to give my notice at the end of my maternity leave and go back to work my notice, would I be able to keep my enhanced maternity pay? Thank-you.

    Editor: As long as you work for the three months after your return you should not have to pay back any money.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I'm currently still working but my employer is in the process of writing up a maternity leave policy. I have asked them how many holidays can I take before my maternity leave on the 28th April this year. They have told me that I'm entitled to the accrued holidays from January to 6 weeks after maternity leave starts. They say they will either pay me for the rest of my holidays or I can add them to next year's entitlement. Is this correct? Also if they were to pay me whilst I'm on maternity leave would this effect my stat maternity pay?. Should I have something in writing before I leave?

    Thank you in advance for your advice.

    Editor: Your employer is correct.  Holiday pay will not affect your SMP, but they should mark clearly what the money is for on your payslip.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I am on maternity leave at the moment and due to return back in June but I am unable to as I have no childcare , I did not qualify for smp although I am recieveing maternity allowance from the job centre , if it comes to my return date and I still havnt got childcare do I have to pay that money back ??

    Editor: You don't have to pay back Maternity Allowance if you do not return to work.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am currently off on maternity moving into my 19th week, I chose too take advantage of the company scheme which offers 18 weeks full pay, 21 weeks smp and 13 weeks at zero pay. I expressed an interest in only taking the 18 weeks and then adding on my remaining annual leave to allow me 6 months off work with my little one, I was sent a letter from work advising that it would be assumed that I would take full advantage of my 52 weeks maternity and that if I wanted to return before I must give a minimum of 8 weeks notification in writing by submitting a return to work for to my manager and HR department. I have not done this as I have been diagnosed with PND and my daughter has been poorly so returning to work has been the last thing on my mind, however I did request conformation from work that I would still be entitled to my accrued annual leave as I was not planning on returning to work until my maternity was expired and I had taken the 52 weeks. The response I got was that I was not allowed and my manager would not sanction it because I hadn't followed procedure by advising her of my intention not to return, I have read the company policy and the only time I have to advise them is when im returning to work, not taking the full entitlement. Im now in a battle with them about taking my entitlement, they say I have to return to work immediately. please help im at my whits end.

    Editor: Your employer should assume you are taking all 52 weeks off unless you inform them otherwise when you must give eight weeks' notice of your return date. Is your employer arguing that you informed them you would return, even though you did not write a formal letter to this effect? Do they know about your post-natal depression? This appares to be a matter for negotiation with your employer as it seems to be effectively a miscommunication problem. You would accrue holiday in the normal way on maternity leave and many people add this on to the end of their maternity leave. If your employer insists on making you come back earlier than you wanted, there are several avenues open to you. If you are still suffering from PND you could ask your GP for a sick note. If your daughter is still poorly you could ask for time off for dependents – see https://www.gov.uk/time-off-for-dependants/your-rights

  • Anonymous says:

    hi there I have just come back fom maternity leave .and I work with the Nhs .. How long can I work for my employer until I move to another job?

    Editor: Do you mean in terms of paying back contractual maternity pay? You would need to check your organisation's maternity policy as this varies for every organisation that offers contractual maternity pay.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, when I go on maternity leave in May 2014 I will only receive SMP from my employer. After doing some research and bringing my findings to their attention they have just confirmed that they will continue to pay £243 in to my childcare vouchers account during my maternity leave. I currently pay that as a salary sacrifice. They have stated that any contribution to child care vouchers that they make during my maternity leave will have to be paid back if I do not return to work for a certain period. Are they allowed to enforce that condition if for some reason I hand my notice in at the end of my maternity leave? Thank you for your advice.

    Editor: The Daycare Trust says legislation requires employers to continue paying childcare vouchers throughout maternity leave. If you have entered into an agreement with your employer to sacrifice your salary and receive childcare vouchers, your employer must continue to pay these vouchers throughout your maternity leave. You do not have to pay these back; even if you do not return to work. If your employer were to force you to leave the voucher scheme, or refuse to pay you vouchers during maternity leave, you could have a case of sex discrimination against your employer. If your employer were to withdraw the scheme altogether, there is not a clear case of discrimination. Employees should be consulted over any changes affecting their contract, but ultimately your employer could withdraw a scheme especially if they were to say – and offer evidence – that the scheme was not financially viable.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am currently on maternity leave and due to go back to work on 24th march. However i have got a new job and start there when my smp finishes. Will i have to pay anything back as my smp should of stopped by then anyway?

    Editor: You will not have to pay anything back. SMP normally ends the week you start a new job, but if you are in the unpaid part you will not be affected by that.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi please help I put 4 weeks holiday in at work feb 2013 due to pregnancy and the fact I would not get to take these holidays as I would be on maternity leave. My maternity leave started in march and ended dec. I have took 3 months unpaid due to childcare costs which means I am due bk beginig of march 2014. The problem is work have overpaid me and were paying me a normal wage as if I was at work until sept 13. They then worked out I owed 2700 pound bk which they want me to pay bk in a payment plan when I return to work. The problem is my place of work is more than 10 miles away meaning 3 buses there and 3 buses bk as I don't drive. I cannot afford childcare and I am a single parent. I am reluctant now to return to work. I have spoken with acas who were useless and the citizens advice who advised I would need to pay the overpayment bk. Do I need to pay the overpayment bk and would I have to pay smoke back if I didn't return to work. I am so stressed out by it al. And if I didn't return to work what would I be able to claim whilst being a full time mum?
    Thanks

    Editor: You would have to pay the money back if it is an overpayment, but you are entitled to pay it back in installments which is why they have suggested a payment plan. If you just had SMP you would not need to pay this back if you don't return. To check your benefits and other entitlements go to http://www.turn2us.org.uk.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi there,
    I'm a teacher and currently 19 weeks pregnant. I am looking at a variety of options regarding smp and when or if to return to work. I unfortunately am due in the school summer holidays meaning I don't get my full paid summer holiday unlike all the other teachers I've been working alongside all year, and they won't be starting to pay my maternity cover until September. However, this is number 2 and I am looking at childcare options and whether its worth going back to work!
    If I started my maternity 6weeks before the end of summer term, and then started full time work again on the first day of holidays eg 10th July, this means I then would get full pay for the summer and if I have handed my notice in, would not be returning in September. However does that mean I then cant restart my maternity claims MA or SMP from September to say April- would look to find another job from then? I know teachers don't accrue holiday but I am aware that I can start back off my maternity on say the first day of Easter holidays. I want to leave the school but just trying to work out the most financially beneficial method for us as a family- can always find a teaching post to return to after maternity.
    Many thanks for any advice or help.

    Editor: Once you go on maternity leave your maternity pay will end.

  • Anonymous says:

    Sorry, re starting work on 10th Feb, I would appreciate knowing if it's ok for me not to return to work or can my employers make me as I previously said I would. Thanks.

    Editor: You need to give contractual notice - http://www.acas.org.uk/index.aspx?articleid=4096. However, if they force you to work your notice, you could claim dependents leave due to childcare issues if you cannot find any solution – https://www.gov.uk/time-off-for-dependants/your-rights.

     

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi
    I was due back to work on Monday 10th February and I have agreed part time hours with my employer although they were not the hours I'd requested. However, I have been let down with my childcare arrangements, and find that it is impossible for me to start work again on Monday due to lack of childcare and travel arrangements (I live 22 miles from my work and the travel and childcare were linked together ). I sent a letter of resignation letter, but have had no reply. Can you advise what I should do/ what rights I have please. I do not plan to claim benefits……the reasons are purely due to not having suitable childcare. Thanks.

    Editor: You could request to talk to your employer about your situation. Could you add holiday time or take emergency leave to sort out alternative childcare? I am not sure if you are asking about rights concerning your job?

  • Anonymous says:

    Sorry Iv just looked at my policies it states I'm entitled to 26 weeks altogether 90% for first 6 weeks and then £109 thereafter smp do I need to pay anything back.

    Editor: You need to check that this is SMP with your HR people. SMP is 6 weeks at 90% and then £136.78 for 33 weeks after that or 90% of pay, whichever is lower. It is not 26 weeks. There must be some mistake. If it is SMP you do not have to pay it back.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I work in a care environment and just wanted to ask I get 6 weeks of pay of 90% thereafter £143 in for 26 altogether on my policy it says nothing about cmp or any other cost it's just about smp I do not want to go back do I pay anything back as this is a private home. And when can I give my notice in.

    Editor: SMP is 6 weeks at 90% pay then 33 weeks at £136.78. Is that what you mean? You do not have to pay back SMP if you do not return after maternity leave.

  • Anonymous says:

    I'm currently 22 weeks pregnant and work as a GP. I'm entitled to 8 weeks full pay, 12 weeks half pay then the rest SMP/MA until 9 months. I started my job on September 15th 2013 and plan to start maternity on 19th May 2014. However I may have to resign in June due to relocation of my husband. What would happen in terms of my maternity if I did give my three months notice in June? Would I still be entitled to SMP?

    Editor: So long as you are still in your job at the 26th week of your pregnancy and were in your current job when you became pregnant you will qualify for SMP no matter what happens after the 26th week. This is 90% of your salary for the first six weeks then the standard rate of £136.78 weekly for the remaining 33 weeks.

  • Anonymous says:

    I resigned from my work last august and am expecting maternity pay until about march. However my emplpyer always pays me late and by cheque. He also refuses to confirm when he will be paying me until. Can you please advise me if there is anything i can do to ensure i get what i am entitled to?

    Editor: You should be entitled to 39 weeks of SMP, 6 weeks at 90% of your pay and the rest at the standard rate or 90% of pay – whichever is lower – for 33 weeks. If you are having problems with being paid, you can contact HMRC's employee helpline number on 0845 30 21 479.

  • Anonymous says:

    To the top question It states that I have six months pay and can take another six months off without pay .. On my policy it says nothing about cmp, and nothing about paying anything thing back. The end bit of the policy just says every employee has the right to return back to work.. Thanks for your answers.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I just wanted to know I'm going to start my maternity in may. I work for a private care home and they'll pay me for 90% first 6 weeks there after about 140 a week, 26 weeks altogether I don't want to go back do I pay anything back?

    Editor: That sounds like Statutory Maternity Pay so you would not have to pay anything back if you don't return. Check your contract to see if your employer offers any additional maternity pay, but it doesn't sound like it.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi
    I am a teacher and am deciding whether to return to work at all. I am due to go back in June but if I were to hand in my notice now would I still get the remainder of my maternity pay (I have received 13 weeks of SMP so far only). And if I did, how would I claim for that?
    Otherwise, I would stay in the same job and hopefully get pregnant with baby number 2 – if I were to get pregnant say in November this year (2014) would I be entitled to SMP again? OR do you need to return to work for 26 weeks before you can claim again?

    Thanks!!

    Editor: You would not have to pay back SMP if you handed in your notice now. It would come in the usual way via your employer. If you did not return to work and got pregnant again you would probably not qualify for SMP because it is dependant on your average weekly earnings in the eight weeks leading to the 26th week of your pregnancy and you would probably be in the unpaid part of your maternity leave by then. You need to be earning on average £109 a week to qualify for SMP, but you would probably qualify for Maternity Allowance as, when on maternity leave, you are still an employee. However, if you went back to work during the eight-week qualifying period you could qualify for SMP again.

  • Anonymous says:

    what happens if SMP is being paid and Maternity Allowance at the same time?
    How can this be fixed?
    What could happen?

    Editor: You cannot claim SMP and MA at the same time. You would have to pay MA back.

  • Anonymous says:

    I've been working at my job since sept 2012. All this maternity stuff is new to me and my boss. He's told me that he thinks if I leave then I need to pay my maternity pay back. But what I've read on here and on other sites is I only need to pay it back if I get extra on top of the smp. Is that right? I don't want to hand in my notice and find out I need to pay it my smp back.

    Editor: That is correct. As long as you are still in your job by the 26th week of pregnancy  you do not need to pay back SMP no matter what happens next.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am due to return to work on 17th March after receiving SMP, however I have been offered a new job with more suitable hours. I would normally have to give 4 weeks notice, but the new job requires me to start training on 17th February (only 2 weeks away). Am I allowed to start a new job within my notice period? Do I have to tell my old employer the date I start so they can adjust any SMP or holiday entitlement?
    Many thanks.

    Editor: You will have to tell your employer so they can inform HMRC and your SMP will be stopped the week you start your new job. You are legally obliged to give your contractual notice as you would be if you were in the workplace, but you may be able to negotiate with your employer, given that you would not be back in the workplace until March.

  • Anonymous says:

    Thankyou ford your help with the above. Can you let me know how I go about claiming my SMP if I don't work for the company anymore? I assume I have to claim it elsewhere if I don't work for them anymore?

    Editor: My understanding was that you are employed up to 14th Feb. If that is the case, you should still deal with it via the company. 

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi. I'm currently on my 25th week of maternity and get SMP. Due to an ongoing grievance I have had to resign my post early (will no longer work there from 14th feb) and I am looking at options for work- either working from home for a company or going freelance. As I have yet to decide on my options how do I claim SMP in the mean time? As I've spoken to both SMP and maternity allowance departments of HMRC and none can help with the answer?! Thanks!

    Editor: If you are still employed by your company at the 26th week of your pregnancy and were employed by them just before you got pregnant you should qualify for SMP and this would be claimed via your employer. They would process the SMP and no matter what happens after the 26th week of your pregnancy you will be entitled to SMP.

     

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi please can you advise
    I am currently on maternity leave and my company is being taken over. I have today been sent a letter advising that I have been assigned to the new company and if I object to this transfer the my employment will "not transfer but come to an end on the date of transfer" 1/6/14. I do not want to work for the new company, but am confused about where this would leave me in terms of repaying my additional maternity pay. My current contract states that I must return for 3 months or repay the money. I have contacted ACAS who have said they can't help as this situation isn't covered by employment law. Many thanks Emily

    Editor: You would need to check your contract. It should outline the position on enhanced maternity pay and paying it back in the case of redundancy. Each policy can vary.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hello I was wondering if you could help me.
    I'm 22 years of age and have been working at my job for nearly 9 1/2 months and have recently found out that i am 3 months pregnant.
    I do not want to return to my job after having my baby due to child care and it will be evening work I will have to go back to. Am i able to leave my job at an earlier date to which i start my maternity leave and still be able to receive SMP or do i have to work until a certain date?

    Also if i am able to claim SMP and do not return towork would i have to pay it back?

    Editor: As long as you stay in your job past the 26th week, got pregnant after you started the job and are paid on average £109 a week or more, you are entitled to SMP and will not have to repay it whatever happens afterwards. The earliest you can start maternity leave is 11 weeks before your baby's due date - https://www.gov.uk/maternity-pay-leave/leave

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I am currently on maternity leave started in May 2013 and I am due to return on 25th Feb 2014 after 9 months. In October my company began consultation as the store is to be closed. This closure tales place on 25th January 2014 so the rest of my team are either redeployed or redundant. As I work for a large company HR have said they will continue to employ me and look for another position for me until my return date. I was now hoping for redundancy as I have found a new job with better hours (I haven't told them this!) Do I have any rights as my job no longer exists? Also if they were to offer me a role looking after 3 sites instead of just the one, do I have to take it?
    Many Thanks

    Editor: If it is reasonable for you to refuse a ‘suitable’ alternative role you will receive a statutory redundancy payment. You will not be due a redundancy payment if you unreasonably refuse a suitable alternative job offer. To decide if it is reasonable for you to turn down an offer of alternative employment will depend on your specific circumstances including: the amount of time you are given to consider the new job, whether the role is temporary or not and the role’s status and the impact it will have on your personal situation (if it is at a different location for example, the affect on your family life and your health). Your employer cannot force you to accept an offer of alternative employment, however if you refuse such an offer unreasonably your will forfeit your right to a redundancy payment as long as: the offer of the alternative employment was made before the end of the previous employment and you were given details of the new job; the new job starts on the termination of the old job or within 4 weeks of it; the job that is offered has the same terms as the original contract, or if they differ the job is still seen as suitable alternative employment. If your Employer believes the alternative job is suitable but you disagree, you may be able to claim for statutory redundancy pay and unfair dismissal at an Employment Tribunal after you have followed your company's grievance process.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hello,
    I understood from previous comments that it is SMP when you receive 90% of your salary for 6 weeks. I'm entitled to get 90% of my salary for 12 weeks. Would that also count as SMP. I'm thinking of not returning to work and need to know if I need to pay something back since it's not stated in my contract.
    Thanks a lot in advance

    Editor: That is above what SMP provides. Check your company's policy on enhanced or contractual maternity pay to see if you need to return or risk having to pay back the money. It may be that you only have to return for a short time.

  • Anonymous says:

    After 6 months of maternity I've gone back to work, my baby has become poorly and needs to be taken care of. Is it possible for me to go back on maternity?

    Editor: You cannot go back on maternity leave, but there are other forms of leave you can take. You can take unpaid time off to look after your child in an emergency, or to arrange for someone else to look after them. This is called time off for dependants. It doesn't matter how long you have worked for your boss and the illness does not need to be serious. But the amount of time you can take off is limited to you just sorting out the emergency. You would need to let your boss know that you need the time off and why as soon as possible, so you should call or email him.

    If you need to look after a child yourself for more than a few days, you should consider parental leave instead. If you are an employee and have worked for your organisation for over a year, you can take up to 13 weeks parental leave off for each child that you have under the age of 5, or under 18 if they have a disability, or that you adopted less than 5 years ago. You must take all the leave before the child reaches 5, or within 5 years of them being placed with you for adoption. However, you can only take a maximum of 4 weeks in any one year.

    You could also look into whether your employer has any special policies of their own for parental leave.

  • Anonymous says:

    Thanks for your reply above … Does this (Not paying back SMP) apply to the whole if the UK?? It doesn't change whether you are north or south if the border ?

    Editor: Yes, it applies to Scotland too.

  • Anonymous says:

    I'm due to return to work in feb with my Keeping in touch days after having our 2nd child. However I no longer want to return to this employment for various reasons but I'm worried I will have demands for re payments of Mat Pay… My mat pay started with 6 weeks at 90% and then down to basic SMP… Can they ask me to pay this back & can I hand in my notice at any time or do u have to wait & return to work for a certain period?? It's all very confusing to me. I'm a worrier 😔

    Any expert advice would be greatly appreciated
    Xxx

    Editor: It sounds as if you have got SMP which is 6 weeks at 90% of salary then 33 weeks at the basic rate or 90% whichever is lower. You do not need to pay back SMP if you resign on maternity leave. Paying back maternity pay only applies to certain types of enhanced maternity pay and it would be laid out in your contract. You can hand in your notice at any time.

  • Anonymous says:

    an add on to the above comment so shall i give my notice before i leave work or at the end of my maternity leave, my employer said any holidays accrued and paid while i am on maternity leave will have to be repaid because they r classes as unreasonable is this also correct..he runs his bussiness by the government websites thanks again.

    Editor: you continue to accrue holiday in mat leave and would be entitled to this up until you hand in your notice.

  • Anonymous says:

    hi i wonder if u can help me. I have told my employer I cannot return to work after my maternity leave and he has told me to write my notice which i have not done yet, but he has told me i will receive SMP but will not accrue holiday pay while on maternity leave. Is this correct. also if i give notice before i leave for maternity can i be at risk of not receiving smp? thanks in advance.

    Editor: As long as you are past the 26th week of your pregnancy your SMP will not be affected no matter what happens afterwards. However, once you have handed in your notice and served it you will no long accrue holiday as your employment will have ceased. If you are still employed while on maternity leave you continue to accrue holiday in the normal way.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am currently on maternity leave receiving SMP and my benefit package cash equivalent from my employer. My CMP finished a few months ago. SMP is due to finish in April 2014, but I cannot return to work until September due to childcare. This return date, along with my part time hours have been agreed with my employer. I am currently taking steps to start a new business which I intend to run part time when I return to work. I could be earning money (although only a couple of hundred pounds a month) before my SMP finishes in April. Will I have to pay SMP back? Also I will continue to receive my benefits package each month from my employer after SMP stops – if I earn money from my new business during this time will I have to repay any benefits package money? Thank you for the advice.

    Editor: You can earn money on a self employed basis without losing SMP. With regard to CMP, you would need to check the wording in your contract as organisations which offer this vary. 

  • Anonymous says:

    From all previous posts a lot of my questions have been answered bar one if you can advise please. Been employed by my employer since May 2005, already been on maternity once. However my son is now 6 so a long time ago, all straight forward though. I've found that maternity can start from being 29 weeks which is when I'd like it to start, but if i let my employer know now (I'm currently 21 weeks) can they sack me before I get to 25 weeks as they may assume that I'm not going back after maternity so would that nullify the SMP claim.

    Editor: If they sack you because you are pregnant or for any reason related to your pregnancy that would constitute discrimination

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I get maternity allowance and not SMP. I am employed 18 hrs a week, taking 1 year's maternity leave and currently only getting holiday pay from my employer. I don't intend on returning to work, will I have to repay holiday pay? I went off in August 2013 and receive holiday every 3 months from them.

    Editor: You continue to accrue holiday pay during maternity leave so you would be entitled to any holiday accrued up until you leave the company, after you have served your due notice.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi there – i am pregnant at the moment and was wondering – what if I want to be off for 9 months and am receiving SMP but then say after being on maternity leave for 5 months I decide to leave my employment and not return. Will be SMP be stopped there and then or will I still get the whole 33 weeks. Thanks.

    Editor: You will still get your SMP whatever happens if you have stayed in your job up to the 26th week of your pregnancy.

  • Anonymous says:

    I'm a bit confused about the 13 weeks unpaid pay. I'm wanting to take all of my 52 weeks maternity leave, but am worried I won't have the money to pay my bills in the last 3 month after my smp stops in march…..do you get help money wise or will it just be my child tax and child benefit that I get at the moment, as I only get 25 pound child tax and the 20 child benefit. My partner works full time, but we pay full on all our bills and just his income won't cover it,confused!!

    Editor: You can check http://www.turn2us.org.uk to see if there is anything you can claim, but normally that is it and it is for this reason that many women don't take the full 52 weeks.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I am currently on week 22 of mat leave and have only ever been on smp. I do not wish to go back to my current employment. Do I wait to hand in my notice or can I resign now but still get my full 39 weeks smp?

    Editor: You can resign now and it will not affect your SMP, but if you start a new job your SMP will finish the week you start that job.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hello thank you for the reply of my previous post:

    ''Hello, I just went back to work after 9 months. When I was pregnant I did not get paid for antenatal classes or any other appointment relating to my pregnancy as I was not aware of it at the time, can I ask for that now?
    Also I got paid SMP, my employer has decided to cut down one of my working hours, is he allowed to do that?
    Also I have a job interview in a few days, if I'm offered the job do I need to pay anything back?''

    When i was pregnant my employer did not pay me for my antenatal classes, he deducted the hours from my wages, (at that time I was not aware that I had the rights to get paid while i was at my antenatal classes) can I some how claim that back?
    Also before my maternity leave I was working 32 hours a week, now my employer has decided to reduce my working hours to 25 hours per week ever since I have come back from my leave. I have not signed any sort of contract with my employer regarding my working hours.
    When I was told that my working hours have been cut, I asked him why, he replied 'Another staff member who took your position while you was on maternity leave wants to keep her hours, which means that instead of working 4 days you will be working 3 days', if you have a problem with that please sort it out with the other member of staff'. I have been really upset, i have tried talking to the other person, but she does not agree and says that I have to speak to my employer, and my employers says speak to the other member.

    Can you please help me on what to do

    thank you

    Editor: You should have the right to return to your job on the same terms and conditions as before or to a suitable alternative. They cannot just give your hours to your cover. It is up to your employer to sort this out. Point them in the direction of legislation regarding return to work following maternity leave - http://www.dwp.gov.uk/publications/specialist-guides/technical-guidance/ni17a-a-guide-to-maternity/statutory-maternity-pay-smp/resuming-work/. You say you have not signed a contract, but you must have verbally agreed the hours you would do and that constitutes a contract.

     

  • Anonymous says:

    Hello, I just went back to work after 9 months. When I was pregnant I did not get paid for antenatal classes or any other appointment relating to my pregnancy as I was not aware of it at the time, can I ask for that now?
    Also I got paid SMP, my employer has decided to cut down one of my working hours, is he allowed to do that?
    Also I have a job interview in a few days, if I'm offered the job do I need to pay anything back?

    Editor: Do you mean your pay was docked for going to ante-natal classes? You could point the legislation to your employer on this. SMP is based on your average earnings in the eight weeks leading up to the 26th week of your pregnancy. Do you mean your employer reduced your hours for that period or that the rate you got was based on incorrect hours? You do not have to pay back SMP, but if you have received enhanced maternity pay in addition to SMP you would need to check the terms of your contract.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I returned to work after 22 weeks maternity leave but my employer is still giving me SMP and my wages. Am i entitled to this maternity pay? If not and they have paid me mistakenly who do i pay it back to and when?
    Do i pay it back at the end of the tax year – e.g April or will my employer ask for this back?
    Also if i have to repay it, will I be asked for it in one lump sum?

    Editor: You should stop being paid SMP the week you return to work. Contact your payroll department. You should be able to negotiate with them how you pay it back. Maternity pay is classed as 'wages' and is subject to the same rules on deductions as for any other form of salary so your employer would be within their rights to recover the amounts as they see fit. However, if you told them the correct dates and informed them when you were returning then you should have more room to negotiate how you pay it back.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am now on my 20 weeks of being pregnant. I just would like to know about maternity pay. I am working at the moment, but I haven't told to my boss about that I'm pregnant. If I'm resigning from the position at work that means that I'm not getting any maternity pay now or even after the baby is born? Thanks!

    Editor: To qualify for SMP you need to have been working with the same employer from just before you got pregnant to the 26th week at least of your pregnancy and to be earning on average more than £109 a week in the eight weeks leading up to the 26th week of your pregnancy. To qualify for Maternity Allowance [less than SMP] you need to have worked for 26 weeks in the 66 weeks leading up to your due date, but it doesn't have to be for the same employer.

  • Anonymous says:

    I went on Maternity leave in 2011. I was due to return to work in 2012 but then took a career break. Following the 12 months maternity, I took 8 weeks annual leave that I had accrued prior to commencing a 3 year career break. I was paid full pay for the 1st 6 months of Mat Leave by my employers. My contract of employment/maternity contract states I have to return to work for 1 month following maternity leave. If I do not return, my employers could seek reimbursement of the maternity pay enhancement. If I now decided to resign would the 2 months annual leave (ie I was back on payroll) count towards the 1 month return to work following maternity leave. I am obviously concerned about resigning if I would then need to pay my maternity enhancement back to my employers.

    Editor: Our HR expert Sandra Beale says you will need to talk to your employer about this as companies vary on enhanced maternity leave policy.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am due to go on Maternity Leave from March 2014, my holidays run from March to March, and would receive paid holidays from when I Leave for my Maternity Leave for the 1 year I would be taking off work, but my question is, if I owe any money back because of deciding not to return to work after my Maternity Leave, would I be allowed to ask if I can repay the money from my holiday pay?

    Editor: You'd have to discuss this with your payroll department. It would vary by company.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I am currently employed as a nanny but as my employer has taken ill there is no job for me to go back to as she won't be living in the area and is staying at her mum's. I am on maternity leave and due to be ending in February. I have just been offered another job and I'm not sure what I should do as I do want to go back to work, but my old employer said I am entitled to my holiday pay as she carried them over, but with her being in hospital and not able to do anything. What should I do and how am I going to tell her I've have got another job? Will I have to pay back the maternity as it is a direct debt to my account?

    Editor: If you start a new job you will lose SMP from the week you start that job. If you resign from your current job, you must give contractual notice and you will be entitled to any holiday accrued up to your leaving date. You will not have to pay back any SMP. This only applies in certain cases to any enhanced maternity pay provided by an employer.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am on maternity leave and I was receiving SMP but the outlet that I worked in has closed. When I called my boss he said that he doesn't have to pay me as the outlet is closed and he "is paying out of his own pocket". What should I do? I was supposed to be on maternity until March.

    Editor: You are still entitled to SMP and need to contact the HMRC. Full information is here - http://www.dwp.gov.uk/publications/specialist-guides/technical-guidance/ni17a-a-guide-to-maternity/statutory-maternity-pay-smp/if-your-employer-cannot-pay/

  • Anonymous says:

    I have returned to work on Oct 29 after 6 months maternity leave, but I have been paid SMP on top of my montly salary for Nov, am I entitled to the SMP for this month or will I have to pay that back to the gov't?

    I have asked my employers about this and still have not recieved confirmation of my entitlement to the SMP payment and I have the SMP money set aside because I don't want to spend what I might not be entitled too.

    Please help.

    Editor: Your SMP should stop the week you return to work so you will have to repay it.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am due to go on maternity leave 31st Jan 2014 and will be taking the full year on SMP, returning end of Jan 2015. However, I do not plan on returning afterwards, but will not tell work this until the end and give my contractual 4 weeks' notice so as to accrue all my holiday pay. My question is that because practically all of my holiday will be accrued in the year 2014, could my boss refuse to pay my holiday pay because it would then be 2015 and they don't normally carry holiday days over?

    Editor: The government states: "If a worker can’t take leave because of being on some other type of leave (for example, sick leave or maternity leave), they may be able to carry-over some or all of the untaken leave into the next leave year." This would have to be negotiated with your employer. It is often better for this reason to add the holiday onto the beginning of your maternity leave.

  • Anonymous says:

    "I am due to give birth in April 2013 and my companies' holiday year runs from Jan-Dec. My employers have agreed to let me take all of my holiday that I will accrue up until dec 2014 before the start of my maternity leave. If I then choose to resign at the end of my ML do I have to pay any holiday back?"

    Expanding on this… Say I wanted to resign before the end of my maternity leave because I wanted to start another job. How will I pay the holiday back? Because my employers aren't allowed to take any of my SMP?

    Editor: You would have to pay back any holiday that was extra to what you had accrued up until you left. You would have to arrange how to pay this back with your company.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi
    I was due to go back to work in January after having my baby, but I decided to go back to work earlier and started back November. When I had my first pay after going back to work I noticed I also got paid my maternity pay. I at first thought I was owed a week's pay of maternity but I got paid again the following week (just maternity pay as I get paid fortnightly) but when I got my next pay I've been paid maternity pay aswell as my wages again?? Do I get maternity pay as well as wages until January when I was due to go back to work or have my work made a mistake???

    Editor: I'm afraid your work has made a mistake. Your SMP should stop the week you start work. Alert your payroll office.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi,
    I started my job on 10th of June 2013 and working 25 hours in a week and my total earning in a month is around £675 and am still working and planning to go for ML from 1st of Dec 2013 as my baby is due in Mid Jan 2014.Am I eligible for SMP or not? thank you

    Editor: It sounds as if you became pregnant before you started your job which would mean you would not qualify for SMP. However, if you have worked 26 weeks in the 66 weeks leading up to your due date [this does not all have to have been in the same job] you will qualify for Maternity Allowance – see https://www.gov.uk/maternity-allowance.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hello, I recently started a new job but 7 days into starting I found out that I was 5 weeks pregnant. I'm currently in my 18th week of pregnancy and was wondering what maternity pay I will be entitled to as I am planning on taking a full year off and what holiday entitlement I get, im looking to start ML at the end of march with my baby being due 26th April and our holiday year runs 1st January to 31st December. Thank you.

    Editor: You would not be entitled to SMP, but you should get Maternity Allowance – see https://www.gov.uk/maternity-allowance. You still accrue annual leave while on maternity leave so you can tack this onto the end of your leave or agree with your employer to take it before.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am due to give birth in April 2013 and my companies' holiday year runs from Jan-Dec. My employers have agreed to let me take all of my holiday that I will accrue up until dec 2014 before the start of my maternity leave. If I then choose to resign at the end of my ML do I have to pay any holiday back?

    Editor: Yes, you only qualify for holiday accrued until your notice is served, but you could leave it until the end of your maternity leave to resign, although you must give contractual notice.

  • Anonymous says:

    Do you have to pay back your enhanced maternity pay if you stay with the same employer but change jobs?

    Editor: You would need to check your contract. For jobs like NHS or civil service repayment only applies if you leave your employer.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am 23 weeks pregnant and do not have plans on going back after the baby. I have worked for the company for 3 years. How soon can I quit to still be entitled to my maternity pay?

    Editor: To qualify for SMP you would need to have worked for your employer until at least the 26th week of your pregnancy.

     

  • Anonymous says:

    I am due to go on maternity leave in feb 2014 and I do not want to return to work
    If I tell my employer this will I not receive SMP,
    And if I am still entitled to SMP regardless of whether I am returning to work or not
    How long will I get SMP for?

    Editor: As long as you have worked for your employer from just before you got pregnant to at least the 26th week of your pregnancy and earn an average of over £109 a week during the qualifying period you will qualify for SMP. SMP is for 39 weeks.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I am 4 months pregnant and just trying to figure out how it all works. I have been with my employer for 3 years earning £130 a week. I want to resign from my job 4 weeks before my baby is due. What will happen. Will I still get statutory maternity pay and for how long? Or will I have to stay employed with them through my maternity leave to be entitled to statutory maternity pay?

    Editor: As long as you are in your job until after the 26th week of your pregnancy you will get SMP.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I am 4 months pregnant and just trying to figure out how it all works. I have been with my employer for 3 years earning £130 a week. I want to resign from my job 4 weeks before my baby is due. What will happen. Will I still get statutory maternity pay and for how long? Or will I have to stay employed with them through my maternity leave to be entitled to statutory maternity pay?

    Editor: As long as you are still employed after the 26th week of your pregnancy you will still get SMP.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi
    I am not entitled to SMP from my Employer so I receive Maternity allowance from the Job Centre. I have been on Maternity leave from the 1st of May 2013. My question is if I submit my letter of resignation before my 52 weeks of Maternity leave are up will I still be entitled to Holiday pay? Or do I have to complete the 52 weeks and then resign?
    I am on a 2-year contract that end in June 2014 so I will only have 2 months to work at the end of the 52 weeks but I want to resign ASAP.

    Editor: You will be entitled to any annual leave accrued up to your leaving date.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi,

    Can I attend college while on maternity leave?

    Editor: If you return to work (other than for 10 Keeping in Touch days) or start work with another employer you will lose your statutory maternity pay. However, if you are undertaking a course this will not affect your pay so you should be fine. There is nothing set down about studying during maternity leave in the legislation. You should, however, check your contract to ensure there is no contractual obligation on you to obtain your employer’s consent in respect of anything you plan to do, but usually this would be restricted to undertaking alternative employment and not studies.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hello I would like to know if I would still be entitled to SMP for the further 33 weeks if I resigned from my teaching post on my 6th week of maternity leave. Teachers are usually required to give early notice as we are offered additional pay after the first 6 weeks, but if we decide to leave we will have to repay some of it. I was worried that I might not get anything (SMP mainly) if I tell them at 6 weeks. Will my SMP be affected?

    Editor: Your SMP will not be affected.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi I am on my maternity leave for a year and am due to go back to work on 23rd feb next year. But i don't want to leave my baby and go back to work. My contract is for 21 hours a week and I am with this company since last year January. I am receiving SMP. So my question is if I don't go back to work do I have to pay back any of my SMP?

    Editor: You do not have to pay back SMP, but your SMP will stop the week you start another job.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am due to go back to work January but I dont want to go back due to childcare. Will I still be able to get smp and where do I get it from at the moment work pays it to me weekly.

    Editor: You will still get SMP as long as you don't start a new job and it will continue to be paid by your employer.

  • Anonymous says:

    I'm on maternity leave and have decided not to go back to work. Does notice start on the day they receive my letter? Are they allowed to include my holidays accrued in the notice period or do they have to pay them in lieu?

    Editor: Notice does begin from when you hand in your letter. Holidays can be paid in lieu or included in the notice period, but if you are still on maternity leave you should not have to use holiday for the notice period unless you were due back imminently.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have been paid SMP in a lump sum for 39 weeks as I was made redundant and would not be returning to work. I have found another job which is due to start in week 23 of my maternity leave. Am I required to pay back SMP for the other 16 weeks?

    Editor: It is illegal for you work during the 39 week period if you have received SMP as a lump sum.  If you do you will have to pay 16 weeks SMP back.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am currently on maternity leave an I'm due to go back to work in January, but unfortunately I'm not going to be able to due to childcare. How long before I am due to go back should I let my work know? Also how do I go about letting them know I'm not going back. What do I need to give them and what do I say? Nervous!!

    Editor: All you need to do is give them your contractual notice as you would if you were at your workplace. If you are receiving any enhanced maternity pay you may need to pay this back if you do not return – check your contract. If you are just receiving SMP this will not apply.

  • Anonymous says:

    I have been paid SMP, because I have acquired holiday/bank holidays in lieu is it possible to request an extension on the date you would have to return to work to use these days up? If you do use the days or if instead the company pays you for them if you decide to resign will you have to pay anything back?

    Editor: Do you mean are you allowed to add accrued holiday to the end of maternity leave? This is allowed, but bear in mind that some employers don't allow you to carry leave over from one year to the other so the holiday you may have accrued may be less than you think. Check your contract. You would not have to pay anything back if you resigned.

  • Anonymous says:

    Please help! I am currently on maternity leave and have always been on smp and I will stopped getting paid in November and I do not want to return to work, however before I left my employer told me I have to come back to pay maternity off. I am really confused and wondering if they are lying just to get me to come back to work. Do I have the right not to come back? would I still have to give notice?

    Editor: You do not have to pay back SMP if you do not return and you do not have to return. You should give your contractual notice.

  • Anonymous says:

    Please help, I'm on maternity leave and have changed my mind and don't want to return to work, I got 13 weeks at full pay and 26 weeks smp. It does not say anything in my contract about paying anything back if I don't return, it just says I must give notice. Would I have to pay it back if they tell me I have too?

    Editor: If it is official company policy, you would have to. Check the organisation's intranet, if you have one, or do they have a maternity policy explicitly laid out anywhere? You would only have to pay back the enhanced part and not the SMP part. Many companies who do ask people to pay back specify a certain time period you may have to return for and if you leave after that you do not have to pay back.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I have been back at work now for 3 months after maternity leave. My employer enhanced my maternity leave on top of statutory by offering 3 months full pay, my contract states that I must pay 100% back if I leave before 6 months and 50% If I leave before a year. I'm pregnant again and will be going on maternity before my year is up. can they make me pay the monies back? I do not plan to go back after this maternity leave so will only be taking statutory pay. What's the best way to approach this situation?
     

    Editor: Our HR expert Sandra Beale says: Whilst on maternity leave you are still technically employed so they cannot make you pay the monies back.  They can make you pay the monies back if you resign.  You can negotiate with your employer about only receiving SMP whilst you are on maternity leave and not receiving the enhanced maternity pay perhaps by raising your concerns about how much money in total you will have to pay back.  I am sure you can refuse to receive the enhanced benefit if you don’t want it.

  • Anonymous says:

    Right I need to know what I will have to pay back if I don't go back to work after having my baby. I was only on £19,000 and given 6 weeks 90% pay and 10 weeks half pay then onto statutory for the rest. Would you know roughly what I would have to pay back if I don't return to work. I just couldn't face returning full time and missing out on my baby growing up and my job just would not be able to be part time. After paying for nursery and then travel costs I really wouldn't earn much after. It's not worth missing out on your baby's development, but I am worried about the amount I will have to pay back. I'm guessing it's going to be something like £2,000. Also we plan to have another baby so becoming pregnant before I have to go back to work. Would I still have to pay money out or I'm hoping they wouldn't want me back for a matter of a few months.

    Editor: You'd have to check your contract with regard to whether you get pregnant on maternity leave. If it states that you have to pay back enhanced maternity pay if you don't return then they could ask you to pay it back. It varies according to the company. You would have to pay back the enhanced element, not the SMP element. You could go back and then resign. Usually you have to go back for 13 weeks and then you don't have to pay back any of the enhanced pay.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am on maternity leave and due to go back to work in March. I am receiving SMP and additional Maternity pay. I have decided not to go back to work as my job does not pay enough for the childcare I would need and myself and my partner do not qualify for any help with the costs. Do I have to pay back my additional Mat pay? will I be able to resign at the end of my leave? What rights do I have?

    Editor: You can resign and you have to give your normal contractual notice. You may well have to pay back the additional maternity pay you have received. You need to check your contract.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am currently on 6 months' maternity leave on smp & am due to return to work at the end of October as stated when I was going off on maternity leave. I have had a meeting with my employer & have requested additional maternity leave to return in January next year. Do I have to request this or can I simply state that I am taking this additional leave as this would in total be 8 months?

    Editor: Normally you do not need to give a return date when you go on maternity leave and your employer will assume you will take the 52 weeks then you have to give them due notice if you return earlier. As your employer is expecting you back on a certain date, it is a good idea to let them know that you intend to change this – see http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/statutory-maternity-leave-returning-to-work

  • Anonymous says:

    I would like to ask if an employee has to pay me maternity pay even though I will finish my job (and give in my resignation letter) because I do NOT want to continue working after my maternity leave. I want to stay at home with my baby. I have been working for the company for 5 years. Will my employer pay me during that 52 weeks or do I get nothing?

    Editor: If you have worked past your 26th week of pregnancy and earn more than £109 a week you will qualify for SMP and you do not need to pay this back if you don't return after maternity leave. I am not sure from your details if you have started your maternity leave. If you are entitled to enhanced maternity pay above SMP, you may have to pay that part back if you do not return, but you would need to check your contract. SMP is 90% of your salary for six weeks and 33 weeks at £136.78 or 90% of salary, whichever is lower.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am on mat leave and am receiving smp from my employer. I took up an evening bar job in addition to help with my bills. Someone mentioned that because I have a bar job which earns about £70 pm, I would lose my smp. Is that correct?

    Editor: If you take up a job after going on maternity leave you will lose SMP from the first week of your new job.

  • Anonymous says:

    Do I need to pay back 90% of my wages that I got for 6 weeks if I don't return after my maternity leave?

    Editor: That sounds like SMP. You do not need to pay back SMP if you do not return after maternity. Paying back only applies to some enhanced maternity packages.

  • Anonymous says:

    I started my maternity leave on 1 Jan 2013 & am due to return to work this September. However, I intend to resign at any time or by giving 8 weeks' notice. I hope to commence a new job on 1 October. Do I have to pay back any SMP? From the above posts, I gathered I am entitled to accrued holiday pay for this year – please confirm. What else should I be aware of? Thank you.

    Editor: You do not have to pay back any SMP if you resign during your maternity leave and you will be entitled to any holiday accrued up to the date of your resignation.

  • Anonymous says:

    I was paid my maternity up until end of April 2013, but I started a new job at the begining of April as my old job paying the SMP had made me redundant last November. I didnt realise i had to tell them I had found a new job. Who will I have to pay the SMP I received in April back to?

    Editor: You would need to pay it back to your former employer as they pay you the SMP and claim it back from HMRC. 

  • Anonymous says:

    …yes, that's is in my contract as when I signed for maternity leave it asked will I be returning…? And I ticked yes. How much would I have to pay back?

    Editor: You would have to pay back the enhanced part, ie minus any SMP. SMP is 90% at full wages for six weeks and then £136.78 for the remaining 33 weeks.

  • Anonymous says:

    I am currently on maternity leave and due to go back to work on the 15th July 2013 after having 10 months off. All has been agreed with work via letter and phone conversation. But since agreeing to come back I have decided to change my career and applied for a job and they want me to start asap. How do I go about telling my current job? Do I just give my normal notice? Do I have to go back for a certain amount of weeks…? Do I have to pay my maternity pay back?? Really confused? ! ?

    Editor: You just need to give your normal notice. If you have been receiving SMP there is no need to pay any money back, but your SMP will stop the week you start your new job. If you have received an enhanced maternity package from your company you need to check your contract as sometimes you are required to return to work or you will have to pay back maternity pay.

  • Anonymous says:

    Is the 90% that's paid for 6 wks smp??

    Editor: SMP is 6 weeks at 90% of salary followed by 33 weeks at the rate of around £136 a week.

  • Anonymous says:

    I was paid 90% of my wages for the first 6 wks and I'm now on the £130 a wk (roughly). If I decide not to return to my job will I have to pay any of this back?? Also work have agreed to carry my holiday over and tag it onto the end of my maternity leave. If I resign after 9 months of maternity leave will they have to pay me any holiday that I'm owed?

    Editor: If you do not return, you do not have to pay back SMP. You continue to accrue holiday in the normal way during maternity leave so the normal rules apply.

  • Anonymous says:

    Can I apply for another job whilst on maternity leave? Could my current employer sack me for it?

    Editor: You can apply for another job whilst on maternity leave just as you can if you were still in the workplace. If you get a job, you will be required to give your normal notice and your SMP will stop the week you start a new job.

    • Sam says:

      Hi if I was to hand my notice in at the end of my maternity (October) and go straight into a different job with a different company straight away would I have to pay my maternity pay back?

  • Anonymous says:

    I receieved extra maternity pay from my company along with SMP. I thinnk it was 8 weeks at full pay and 11 weeks at half pay then for the remaining i jut recieved SMP. Due to moving away and not being able to get to work, I left the company in the middle of December. I now am a full-time mum hoping to go to college in Sept to study a full-time course in higher Education. My question is who will I have to repay the additional maternity pay to and does it have to be paid in full as, like i said before, I'm currently a full-time mum so unemployed?

    Editor: You need to check your contract to see if you will have to pay back contractual maternity pay if you don't return and how much. Has your company approached you about paying it back?  If and only if your contract does specify that contractual pay must be paid back if you don't return, you would only have to pay back the extra not the SMP part.

  • Anonymous says:

    Hi, I am receiving SMP and have had twins and can't afford childcare costs to return to work. It was a full-time position. Am I entitled to any holiday pay and do I need to wait to give notice a month before I'm due back or can I just hand my notice in now?

    Editor: You can hand in your notice at any time and you will not lose your SMP. You would be entitled to holiday pay based pro-rata on the weeks you are still an employee for this year. If your maternity leave started before this financial year, you will need to check if your organisation allows you to carry holiday over from one year to another as, if not, you would lose any holiday entitlement for last year.

     

  • Anonymous says:

    I'm in a confusing financial position and wondered if you could help. I have a 3-month notice period on full pay at work and am pregnant. I do not want to return to work afterwads in my current job at all and in fact want to sever ties with them at the earliest opportunity. I believe I am entitled to SMP. I wondered what the situation would be if I was to hand in my notice as I go on maternity leave (hopefully 4-8 weeks before due date). This would entitle me to 3 months full pay as opposed to the lower SMP pay, but it doesn't seem to sit right. Is this a possibility?
    Alternatively if I was to resign when I am on the lower rate SMP would I be entitled to maternity pay for the full 33 week term?

    Editor: If you resign after the 26th week of pregnancy you will be entitled to all 39 weeks of SMP. You should only get the three months on SMP since your maternity leave period would have already started.

  • Anonymous says:

    Please can you help – I have paid maternity for the first 12 weeks of my maternity and then I got the rest from the job centre as work said they could not pay me the rest. I am due to go back to work in a few weeks and before I went on maternity they moved me to a store nearly 30 miles away from my home address and now they want me to go back to the same place which I cannot afford to do. If I don't they said I have to pay back my maternity. Can they do this as I have been working for them for 4 years and only had the 12 weeks pay from them? Also my son has learning difficulties and I need to be around for him as I have lots of school meetings and doctors appointments for him coming up.

    Editor: I would need a bit more information to advise you better. Is this SMP you are talking about? If so, you certainly do not have to pay this back. I don't understand why your employer cannot pay you the SMP since most of this can be reclaimed from HMRC. With regard to relocation, that is a change in your terms and conditions and you need to be fully consulted on this. If you require more advice, please send more details via our Advice & Support/Q & A page box.

  • Anonymous says:

    I resigned from my post with a company in the 15th week before my baby was due. I was wondering if I am still entitled to Statutory Maternity Pay……I really am not sure how the whole system works can you help me please.

    Editor: You can get Statutory Maternity Pay if you:

    • are employed by your employer in the 15th week before the week your baby is due (this is called the qualifying week) and

    • are employed by that employer continually for at least 26 weeks into the 15th week before the week your baby is due (certain breaks in employment still count), and

    • have earned an average income equal to at least the lower earnings limit for National Insurance purposes. This is calculated over a period of at least 8 weeks into the 15th week before the week your baby is due. This period can vary slightly depending on how you are normally paid. The lower earnings limit can change every year. Visit http://www.direct.gov.uk for the current rates.

    If you leave your employment after the start of the 15th week before the week your baby is due (for example if you are made redundant, or resign), your employer must still pay you Statutory Maternity Pay if you satisfy the conditions for payment mentioned above. 


Post a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recommended