Our Payroll Manager Sara Maxfield shares these useful points, reflecting regulations as at 1 July 2022.
- While your employee is receiving Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP), your employer pension contributions should be maintained in line with their usual salary, not SMP.
- If you suspend your employee from working for maternity reasons (e.g. when it is not safe for them to carry on with their usual work either before or after giving birth), they are entitled to receive their full salary during the period of suspension.
- The employee’s annual holiday entitlement continues to accrue throughout Statutory Maternity Leave (SML), where the SML is paid or unpaid.
- Women on maternity leave are entitled to undertake work, training or other contact sessions for their employer for up to 10 ‘Keeping in Touch’ (KIT) days during their maternity leave period, without bringing their leave to an end and without losing Statutory Maternity Pay. When an employee works on one or more KIT days, this does not extend their Statutory Maternity Leave period.
- If you give an employee a pay rise at any time from the start of the ‘relevant period’ (which is approximately 23 weeks before the week the baby is expected to be due) until the last day of the employee’s period of Statutory Maternity Leave, this should be reflected in the ‘Average Weekly Earnings’ calculation carried out to confirm the employee’s Statutory Maternity Pay. This includes when the pay rise is in the form of an increase in the National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage.
- Mothers can end their Statutory Maternity Leave and Statutory Maternity Pay, or commit to ending them at a future date in order to share the untaken balance of leave and pay, as Shared Parental Leave (SPL) and Statutory Shared Parental Pay (ShPP) with their partner. This is known as ‘curtailment’.
- You must keep Statutory Maternity Pay records for three tax years plus the current year. However, best practice is to keep them for six years.
Sara Maxfield MAAT ACIPP
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