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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 50156
Experience:  Qualified Employment Solicitor
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I have a question regarding maternity leave - I am leaving

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I have a question regarding maternity leave - I am leaving the company I work for after the maternity period but would like to know the status of SMP and unpaid leave. I can go on maternity leave from Jan 25h onwards but wanted to know if my maternity leave is affected if I take unpaid leave between the 8th and then? (I will have worked for the company 26 consecutive weeks then and the calculation of average pay period is betters 1.11 and 31.12)
Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. I presume that you will remain an employee of the company during this period of unpaid leave?



Ben Jones :

this should not affect your entitlement to SMP because that mainly depends on your continuous service, which remains unbroken during that period of unpaid leave, and your average weekly earnings.

The law is that an employee will be entitled to SMP if:

  • She has been continuously employed for at least 26 weeks by the end of the Qualifying Week, which is the 15th week before the expected week of childbirth (EWC). The 26-week period must include at least one day's employment in the Qualifying Week.

  • Her normal weekly earnings in the calculation period, which you know, are not less than the Lower Earnings Limit (LEL) for National Insurance purposes

  • She is still pregnant 11 weeks before the start of the EWC (or has already given birth).

  • She gives the employer at least 28 days' notice (or, if that is not reasonably practicable, as much notice as is reasonably practicable) of the date she intends SMP to start

  • She supplies a certificate (usually a MAT B1) from a midwife or doctor, confirming the date of her EWC. This must be given to the employer either before the birth, no more than three weeks after the birth or, if she has good cause for delay, as soon as reasonably practicable.

As long as you meet the above criteria, taking unpaid leave will not affect your rights to SMP

Hope this clarifies your position? If you could please let me know that would be great, thank you


that clarifies it immensely - thank you very much.

Ben Jones :

you are welcome, all the best

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