5 months pregnant and going for a job to cover mat leave role....should I?

(25 Posts)
joblessandpregnant Tue 05-Nov-13 02:16:30

Help...am in a real dilemma...got made redundant 2 weeks ago and so far have struggled to find work. Got contacted by a company I applied for temp work with to say they have a 12 month mat leave contract to start asap with a 6 week handover...

Legally I dont have to tell a prospective employer I am pregnant...it is a huge company who could afford the loss...i am just concerned about the moral side of this and the way this would be seen by the company and I would be treated...ie badly

However at present i have no income, cant claim benefits and i prob wont get what i was owed from previous company until jan...

so what do people think...? am i really bad if i dont tell them?

NatashaBee Tue 05-Nov-13 02:35:07

God, tough one. Do you think you'll work in that industry or for that agency again? If so, they might be pretty annoyed and spoil your chances of future work.

Flibbedyjibbet Tue 05-Nov-13 04:00:55

I understand your predicament is terrible and only you know what lengths you will go to. I couldn't do it to be honest and for what it's worth I don't think many companies can afford to pay 3 people for one role which is what will happen when tou go off as well.

After saying that at 5 months pregnant with both of mine, particularly number 2 I would have never git away with it ha ha.

All the best in deciding what to do, I really feel for you.

likelytoasksillyquestions Tue 05-Nov-13 04:51:06

The company wouldn't be paying OP once she goes on mat leave, would they - am assuming she'll only be entitled to statutory, which is ultimately claimed back from the govt as I understand it. This may also be the case for the original maternity-leaver - I'd worked for my company for 3 years before DS was born but still only got SMP.

Hard decision, OP. I agree with a pp who said only if you won't work in the industry or for that agency again, because it will piss them off. But sometimes you have to do what you have to do.

joblessandpregnant Tue 05-Nov-13 10:29:41

I do work in that industry but the job is much less money/title etc than have been used to.

They won't have to pay me, it will come from govt...

I think am going to go to interview and see what happens...I may not even get away with it as am starting to show...

Thank you all for your input, as expected mixed reactions, but alas you do have to look after yourself and as I have read and seen if I tell them the truth I probably won't get a look in...

Stevie77 Tue 05-Nov-13 15:41:38

OP, agree with your last paragraph. You need to look after yourself here because no one else will and only you will suffer the consequences. Go for the interview, see how it goes and if you do get offered the role, then decide how you proceed.

I always think, what would a man do?

WipsGlitter Tue 05-Nov-13 15:47:11

So realistically you will only be working there for four months and then they will have to re-recruit?

Tricky... if someone did that in my org I would be very, very surprised.

WipsGlitter Tue 05-Nov-13 15:47:37

Why can you not claim benefits?

TippiShagpile Tue 05-Nov-13 15:50:44

Will you even get SMP? I thought you had to be working for 6 months to claim it? I might be wrong - it's a while since I had to check.

TippiShagpile Tue 05-Nov-13 15:55:20

IIRC it's something like you have to be working for 26 weeks up to the 15th week before your due date.

TheDoctrineOfWho Tue 05-Nov-13 20:17:17

Are you eligible for Maternity Allowance?

You won't qualify for SMP with the new job.

TippiShagpile Tue 05-Nov-13 20:34:20

By the time you start you'll maybe be as much as 30 or so weeks so you'll only be able to do the handover and a couple of weeks more then you'll leave. If I were the company I'd be really pissed off and I think you'll ruin any potential relationship you have with them.

mojojomo Tue 05-Nov-13 20:35:13

If OP is 5m pregnant then the 6 week handover will take her to at least 6.5m pregnant and possibly over 7 months, so realistically the company would have to start recruiting now for OP's cover person so they get the 6 week handover too.

It's possible that the OP has a due date earlier than the person she'd be covering. The company clearly think the role requires an extensive handover to a new person.

The issue of whether the employer or government pay OP during mat leave is probably less significant than the recruitment cost and effort that OP's potential colleagues would be providing.

notanyanymore Tue 05-Nov-13 20:37:04

I think it would be a fairly odd thing to do TBH. I wouldn't have the brazen balls to do it.

Repeatedlydoingthetwist Tue 05-Nov-13 20:50:03

I wouldn't do it, it would just feel a bit shitty to me.

TheDoctrineOfWho Tue 05-Nov-13 20:52:46

Do you know how long you would want to take off on maternity leave?

WallyBantersJunkBox Tue 05-Nov-13 20:55:24

I did it op, I got SM pay so it didn't cost them anything. It worked out better for them in the end, as the mum I was covering for asked to come back early, as her husband lost his job, so it was less hassle than me coming back after 6 months for a few more months work. I was happy to just finish after the 6 months.

TippiShagpile Tue 05-Nov-13 21:00:39

But the OP won't get SMP.

The company will have to undergo an extra lot of recruitment costs/inconvenience.

Also think about the woman going on maternity leave. I would have been so seriously stressed about my job if my maternity cover did this. A 6 week handover implies a fairly complex/senior role.

PiratePanda Tue 05-Nov-13 21:02:55

Let's be realistic shall we. They're going to take one look at your pregnant belly and not hire you, illegal or not. Don't waste their time or yours.

Normally I'm gung ho for wonen who go for interview while pregnant for permanent posts, but morally this just does not seem right to me.

hermioneweasley Tue 05-Nov-13 21:05:00

I wouldn't do it. It's a small world and reputation is everything.

TheDoctrineOfWho Tue 05-Nov-13 21:29:12

I agree, they are unlikely to hire you for maternity cover.

However, one thing you could do, as you have more senior experience, is go and talk to the company and see if there is anything you could do short term, on a consultancy basis?

WallyBantersJunkBox Tue 05-Nov-13 21:38:43

I did tell the company that I was 15 weeks pregnant, and put the decision in their hands. They didn't have many people coming forward with my experience, and as I could start immediately they took me on knowing in advance what to expect.

I was overqualified for the role and able to hit the ground running. I managed a department changeover and earned the person i was covering a nice bonus, and the company a decent profit on my department. I set up the team with systems and processes to cope with the 3 month gap between managers.

I would say just go for the interview and lay your cards on the table. A lot of people take mat leave contracts as a stop gap role whilst they are looking for permanent roles and don't think twice about walking out when they have the role they want. It's a risky hire in that aspect anyhow.

yummumto3girls Wed 06-Nov-13 12:22:58

Legally you won't be entitled to any maternity pay or employment rights. You are absolutely entitled to apply and they cannot discriminate against you in the grounds of your pregnancy. Taking my HR hat off though I think it is a very naughty and selfish thing to do and won't gain you much respect, they could be a future potential employer, contacts etc. however if you are desperate for money, you have to do what you gave to do!

joblessandpregnant Wed 06-Nov-13 21:51:42

Thanks for all your responses, mixed bag but kind of confirms what I thought...I am going to go for the interview but am going to be honest and tell them that I am pregnant and see whether they have any shorter contract or temporary work. If i impress them enough they may look to take me on when i wish to return to work. I was in a pretty dire situation when i write the original post but have managed to secure a totally unrelated job working from home, which I can do being pregnant right up until almost d day!

I won't get SMP but may qualify for statutory allowance.

TheDoctrineOfWho Thu 07-Nov-13 06:55:45

I think that's a really good approach, OP.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now