Maternity and pregnancy
As a parent/expectant parent or partner you have a range of rights at work
Below is a brief guide to give you an overview of your rights, it is not intended to be a legal guide. The full university guide to family leave arrangements can be downloaded here: Family Leave arrangements
Whilst you are pregnant
- You have the right to paid time off to attend ante-natal appointments for any appointment that has been made on the advice of a medical practitioner, nurse or midwife. Except for your 1st appointment the University can request a copy of the certificate showing you are pregnant and the letter confirming the appointment
- If you are off sick whilst you are pregnant and it is due to your pregnancy make sure it is recorded as 'pregnancy related' on your records and return to work meeting
- If you are concerned about the impact of your work on your health you should ask to be referred to Occupational Health straightaway. You should not do any duties that place your health at risk
- All pregnant members of staff are entitled to up to 52 weeks' statutory maternity leave.
- If you have been employed by the University for at least one year continuously then you are entitled to University maternity pay. This entitles you to:
- Full pay for the first 18 weeks
- After this, you are entitled to 21 weeks at statutory maternity pay. This is paid at 90% of your average weekly earnings, or a rate set by the Department of Work and Pensions (£139.58 in June 2015), whichever is lower
- Then 13 weeks unpaid maternity leave
- To claim the University maternity pay you must return to work for the University for at least 3 months, otherwise the University can claim the difference between the University maternity pay and statutory maternity pay back.
Statutory Maternity Pay
- If you have been employed by the University for less than one year but have been continously employed by the University for 26 weeks by the 15th week before your expected week of giving birth (EWC), you are entitled to statutory maternity pay. This entitles you to:
- For the first 6 weeks, pay at 90%
- Then 33 weeks at a lower rate of 90% of your average weekly earnings, or a rate set by the Department of Work and Pensions (£139.58 in June 2015), whichever is lower
- Then 13 weeks unpaid maternity leave
- If you are not entitled to statutory maternity pay you may be entitled to receive a Maternity Allowance which is paid from Job Centre Plus. You will need an 'SMP1' from Human resources and may wish to access other support services - see A Guide to Support Services
The partner of a person who is due to give birth is eligible for two weeks' statutory paternity leave where
- they are the biological father of the baby and/or the mother’s spouse, partner or civil partner and has, or expects to have, joint responsibility for the upbringing of the child; and
- they have at least 26 weeks' continuous service by the end of the 15th week before the expected week of childbirth.
Statutory paternity leave is paid at the rate of two weeks at full pay. It must be taken as either one full week or two full consecutive weeks, and should be completed within 56 days of the birth.
Shared parental leave
Since 5 April 2015, Staff whose partner gives birth or adopts have the option of sharing their partner's maternity or adoption leave. This can happen anytime from 2 weeks after the birth/adoption for the duration of what would have been the maternity/adoption leave period.
Shared Parental Leave pay (paid up to a maximum of 37 weeks) is at the statutory weekly rate. In order to qualify for SPL pay, the employee must either be entitled to statutory maternity pay or statutory adoption pay or be entitled to statutory paternity pay and have a partner who qualifies for statutory maternity pay or maternity allowance or statutory adoption pay.