Help - equated pay being reduced due to my taking maternity leave

(6 Posts)
Swizzel Mon 09-Sep-13 18:21:42

I work 24 hours a week, term-time only, as a cook for a company who provide school dinners. My pay is equated, so I get paid a regular amount each month.

I am currently pregnant and my employer has stated that, as I will be taking maternity leave and therefore not be working for the full tax year, my regular pay will be decreased slightly to take into account the fact that I will only be working for 6 months of the year.

Every penny counts at the moment, particularly as I am now suffering with SPD and it looks likely that I will soon be needing crutches, in which case my employer has said that I will have to get my doctor to sign me off because I will not be allowed in the kitchen with crutches for health and safety reasons, and that as this is a case of my pregnancy affecting my work rather than vice versa, they are under no obligation to offer me alternative work.

I am not certain whether what my employer is saying is correct with regards to my pay. I had personally thought that this should not make a difference to my pay, as I was under the impression that whilst on maternity leave you are still considered to be employed? I have googled high and low in an attempt to find more information on this matter, but to no avail, so I am hoping that perhaps somebody here might be able to shed some light on the matter for me?

Beccadugs Mon 09-Sep-13 21:06:50

No idea I am afraid, but watching with interest as I too am on a term time only contract.

WRT your SPD (bad luck!!) I believe they should offer you alternative duties. I will see if I can find the document I was reading earlier online for you, which covered this.

Madlizzy Mon 09-Sep-13 21:08:51

Ring ACAS tomorrow. I don't think they are being 100% right on this as being on maternity leave means you are still counted as an employee and they can offer alternative duties if they have any.

Beccadugs Mon 09-Sep-13 21:13:08

Regarding your SPD and crutches, this:

If the employer can’t remove any risks (eg by offering suitable alternative work) they should suspend the employee on full pay.

is from here:

https://www.gov.uk/working-when-pregnant-your-rights

bringbackopalfruits Mon 09-Sep-13 21:13:49

Is it because once you're on mat leave you'll be on SMP not your normal salary? Therefore what you earn over the whole year is less than it would normally would be? They should be able to show you the figures so you can see why it's reducing.

As for being signed off, they should ideally be able to redeploy you but I suppose it depends on what other jobs are available within the company.

Swizzel Tue 10-Sep-13 09:07:59

Hi all, and many thanks for the replies.

Bringbackopalfruits - yes, what you have said is correct. I have a pay statement from work which has a breakdown of what I receive, but to me it's like reading Greek! Basically, it states my hourly rate of pay, my average hours per day, and the total number of days to be worked for this tax year, which have been reduced to reflect the fact that I will be missing 6 months due to being on maternity leave.

It then goes on to cover the total hours I will actually work this year, my average hours per week, and my average holiday allowance which again seems to be reduced due to my going on maternity leave. It then adds up my total pay for the year (on a 6 month only working basis) to my holiday pay, and divides it by 6 (again, the number of months I will be working before going onto SMP).

Now, I don't think it will make a huge difference to my salary, perhaps £10-15 per month, but I really wish that I were an accountant and could figure out the exact figures!

Perhaps I will give ACAS a ring later today and see whether they can shed some light on the matter.

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