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PT/lower paid staff receive full wage when on mat. leave in my gaff - FT/higher paid don't!

(79 Posts)
TheDetective Sun 02-Oct-11 18:19:04

Just a muse I had today while chatting to colleagues in work. My work pay maternity leave as following: 90% of full wage for 8 weeks, followed by 18 weeks 50% pay plus SMP. After this its 3 months SMP only.

We realised that those who are working FT or for a higher salary are getting a bit of a bum deal. Those who earn say £2000 a month, drop to appox £1500, and those who earn £1000 will stay bringing home £1000.

I'm a little screwed, as the main wage earner in my household - and as a result can actually only afford to take 8 weeks maternity leave in reality, plus some annual leave.

I know lots of employers only pay SMP, and some aren't entitled to pay at all, but I wonder how the above scenario is justified?

Any opinions?

troisgarcons Sun 02-Oct-11 18:21:30

YOu must have a staff hand book and a policy on this?

Word-of-mouth is rarely correct. Could be they have factored in pro-rata holiday pay for a certain period.

Northernlurker Sun 02-Oct-11 18:22:50

Your employer is being the same to everybody - that's how it's justified. Dependant on income level - yes some people are no worse off on maternity leave but higher earners are still earning more. As long as the arrangements are the same the amount is irrelevant.

What do you want your employer to do - pay you a higher proportion of full pay? hmm

TheDetective Sun 02-Oct-11 18:22:51

Its not word of mouth, its direct from the policy on our intranet.

flowery Sun 02-Oct-11 18:23:01

Are you saying you think SMP should be a %age of salary for the full 39 weeks rather than for just the first 6 then a flat rate? It's nothing to do with your employer, who is paying well above what they are required to and is evening it out as far as possible by paying the extra as a percentage of salary.

TheDetective Sun 02-Oct-11 18:23:57

No, but to make it fairer to all I guess! Its a bit crap when I think about it!

Choufleur Sun 02-Oct-11 18:24:24

It's a percentage of your wage plus smp. Agree it means that people on higher wages actually drop more but it's not unfair. You are still getting the same percentage paid.

TheDetective Sun 02-Oct-11 18:24:39

No, not talking about changing the SMP, but about the employers policy.

kat2504 Sun 02-Oct-11 18:25:26

It doesn't make any sense. I would expect the 90% and the 50% refer to what that person actually earns. So it would be 90% and 50% of their part time wage, not what they would be earning if they worked full time. It will almost certainly be pro-rata.
You should check out your company policy, there is probably something about this in the terms and conditions handbook.

flowery Sun 02-Oct-11 18:26:16

But your employer pays the extra as a percentage of salary. It's the flat rate SMP that means low paid staff end up with a higher proportion of their usually pay. What would you like your employer to do?

TheDetective Sun 02-Oct-11 18:27:15

It is 90% and 50% of their wages - calculated as an average of 3 months wages from the 15th week of pregnancy.

yellowraincoat Sun 02-Oct-11 18:27:22

I think that is a fair system. Don't you think it's nice that lower-earning people get the breaks sometimes?

Northernlurker Sun 02-Oct-11 18:27:51

Part time come out better because SMP is a higher proportion of their salary than it is of yours.

Overall you earn much more than those eemployees.

kat2504 Sun 02-Oct-11 18:27:58

Those who earn £1000 would therefore drop to £500 plus smp. It just so happens that this adds up to £1000 but you can't say it isn't worked out fairly. It looks unfair but it isn't, unless you reckon the government should pay you even more smp if you are already better off?
The part of this that is controlled by your employers is worked out fairly in relation to wages. The part that is worked out by the government is the same for all women.

troisgarcons Sun 02-Oct-11 18:28:01

Im having a thick moment here.

If you earn, say £2k pm and drop to 90% then you gross £1800
If you earn, say 1K pm, and drop to 90% then you gross £900

The OP is saying part timers on £1K are staying on 1K.

Or I think thats what the Op is driving at?

TheDetective Sun 02-Oct-11 18:28:16

I don't know, thats why I posted - how can it be made fairer? Because I don't see how it is, especially if you as the woman is the main wage earner, and can't afford such a big drop in wages.

TheDetective Sun 02-Oct-11 18:28:56

You drop to 50% plus smp trois.

troisgarcons Sun 02-Oct-11 18:28:56

kat has explained it - thank you

kat2504 Sun 02-Oct-11 18:29:17

And your employer can't change the policy to the detriment of lower paid workers as they would quite rightly claim it was unfair if you got 50% and they only got 30%.

Bonkerz Sun 02-Oct-11 18:29:27

This is true for me. I work 20 hours a week taking home about £130 a week. I'm currently on smp and am receiving £128 ish a week or whatever the smp is. Originally I planned to go back to work after 15 weeks but as I'm not actually losing any wage (by the time u factor in travel costs etc) I have extended to the full 39 weeks!!!!

mousesma Sun 02-Oct-11 18:29:32

Giving everyone a the same percentage of their pay means that everyone is being treated fairly. How else could you calculate it?

You are lucky enough that for most of the time your pay far exceeds that of the lower paid workers, it's bit much to be complaining now the benefits aren't on your side for once.

RitaMorgan Sun 02-Oct-11 18:29:53

Do you think lower waged worked should get a smaller percentage of their salary than higher waged workers then? So you get 50%, someone else gets 40%.

claricestar Sun 02-Oct-11 18:30:52

hmmm...I'm working out my maternity leave at the moment and your package is loads better than mine envy

said Sun 02-Oct-11 18:31:11

But you're having the same percentage drop of your wages as everyone else aren't you? SMP is not means-tested and nor should it be

KatieMiddleton Sun 02-Oct-11 18:31:31

What are you on about? Your workings out make no sense.

50% is 50% whether you're full or part time so the part timers are nonbetter off!

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