Doing a second job on maternity leave: ask the expert

I am on maternity leave from the NHS. I also have a part-time job (bank work) for a private health company. I am not due to return to work until January 2010, but the private health company have asked if I can cover some weekend work over the next month. Will this affect my maternity pay?

The general rule is, if you work for another employer (who is not liable to pay you statutory maternity pay) whilst on maternity leave, you lose your entitlement to Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP) for the week in which you work and for the remainder of your maternity pay period.

However, your maternity pay is not affected if you were employed by that employer in the 15th week before your Expected Week of Childbirth (EWC).
Therefore, as long as the private health company is not paying you any SMP and you were employed by them 15 weeks before your EWC, any work you do for them now should not affect your entitlement to SMP. You should notify your employer paying your SMP (the NHS) of any work that you do for your second employer during maternity leave a minimum of seven days before you commence working.
In relation to any contractual maternity pay that you are receiving from the NHS, you would need to check their policy to make sure there are no implications.
This gives a general overview only, based on the information available at the time of writing. It cannot be relied upon in any particular case. Specific legal advice must always be considered to include consideration as to whether the legal position contained has changed since publication. For further information and advice, please contact Lemon&Co Solicitors on 01793 527141 or visit their website: www.lemon-co.co.uk.



Comments [25]

  • Sarah hussein says:

    Hi I work for the NHS and I am currently on mat leave, I’m getting smp and omp from the nhs job. I have also been working for an agency since May last year! am I still able to work for the agency without my maternity leave pay being affected?
    I was thinking of doing a few shifts a month

  • Bella says:

    Hi, I will be on maternity leave sometime this year and I have a part time job I do once in a while with an agency ( I have been with them for over a year now). I was wondering if I go to on maternity leave with my main job, can i still work occasionally with my part time job?

  • Kayleigh says:

    Hi, I’ve had a full time job for one company and I’ve been on a zero hour contract for another company for a few years now. I only recieve SMP for my full time job. I was wondering if I could work my zero hour contract one day a week while on maternity without it affecting my SMP? And if so how many hours can I work while on maternity? I was hoping to work one or two shifts a month while on maternity but don’t want my SMP to stop.

  • Kerrie says:

    I am currently on my 5th month of maternity leave from a company I work 35h for.
    A part time job has become available in a sector I’m extremely interested in. I wonder if I can gain a new part time job, while on maternity leave – but with the intention of returning to my current job after the full year of Mat leave?
    This will give me a good amount of time gaining experience in the new sectors part time position, while my child is still young. Then once I’m due back at my current job – I will do both Initially with the hope that I can phase one in and one out (long term) but with no fixed plan on how that might happen. My intention would be to return to my current job and keep the part time job also till I find a position with more hours (which will take time) within the new sector I wish to work in.

    • Kerrie says:

      Is it just my pay that will end or will my leave end, also?
      And, as I’m committed (financially) to return to my current job, do I lose my smp? As it’s clear that if you replace your old, qualifying job, with a new one and leave your original post. Where do I stand with gaining a new position with the commitment of continuing mat leave and returning to that same job after the 52w?

      Thank you!

      • Mandy Garner

        Mandy Garner says:

        Hi, Your SMP would stop the week you start any new job that you take up during maternity leave.

        • Kerrie says:

          Thank you. I wonder if my entitlement to take maternity leave will also end, would I need to go back to work when I start my new part-time job or am I still able to take my 52 weeks leave from my original job and return as planned at the end of the year? Thank you

        • Kerrie says:

          Thank you. I wonder if my entitlement to take 52 weeks off from my original job will end also if I start a new part-time job during my maternity leave? I would still like to return to my original job and keep part-time job, but work during my maternity leave from my original job in the part-time job… Thank you

  • Georgina beacham says:

    I currently have 2 jobs and have worked these for a number of years! Can I claim smp for one job if I work the other? I want to go straight back to work after having the baby but only in one of my jobs as I am able to take baby with me! If I do this will I lose my maternity pay for my other job?

    • Mandy Garner

      Mandy Garner says:

      Hi, If you have been doing both jobs continuously for a number of years you can start and stop your maternity leave at different times without your SMP from the other job being affected.

  • Caroline hanson says:

    Hi I am currently have 2 jobs one that I am getting maternity pay for. The other job I have been with since November and I’m wanting to do one shift a week will I lose my maternity pay.

    • Mandy Garner

      Mandy Garner says:

      Hi, If you have been doing the second job since before the 26th week of your pregnancy you can return to it without your SMP being affected. Is it SMP you are getting?

  • Zoe says:

    I currently work 3 jobs. My main job is a teaching assistant. I will be get SMP from this job. My other 2 jobs are care roles. I have done them both for over a year now, but don’t earn enough ton either to qualify for SMP. Can I work those jobs whilst getting SMP from my teaching assistant role? And is there a certain amount i can earn? I’m worried my SMP might stop and can’t find any information that confirms whether I can or can’t! Thanks

  • Dan says:

    My wife works full time for NHS and is looking to do some administrative hours for my company up until her due date (I’m a therapist and registered business as sole trader). Once the baby arrives she will have SMP from NHS but can I also pay her an additional wage or SMP?

    • Mandy Garner

      Mandy Garner says:

      Hi,
      Is she only going to be working before her due date and what week is she currently in? Is she past the 26th week of pregnancy? She would not qualify for SMP from you, but she could do a second paid job up until her due date, depending on what her NHS contract says about second job. She cannot start a new paid job after going on maternity leave without her SMP being stopped from her NHS job. However, she could do self employed work without it being affected.

  • Toby says:

    Hi, was wondering if I take up an evening job 2-3 hours a day whether it will affect my pay SMP or get a letter from HMRC?

    • Mandy Garner

      Mandy Garner says:

      Hi,
      If you do any new employed work during maternity leave you will lose your SMP from the week you start. You can, however, do self employed work without affecting SMP.

  • Katrina says:

    I understand that if I work for 2 companies and 1 doesn’t pay SMP that I can work for the second company without loosing SMP.

    I am currently working full -time for a company but and I also do additional hours for the same company hourly paid In a different department. Can I continue my hourly paid role while on leave without loosing SMP (this is in addition to the KIT days)

  • Amy Gore says:

    I am currently on maturnity leave and my smp ends at the end of august but would like to start a part time before do you know what the situation with paying tax is on the part time job? My marturnity pay for this tax year will be well under the yearly amount you can earn before you get taxed. Thanks


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