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Considering pregnancy but wouldn't have a job after mat leave?

(9 Posts)
ThePartyArtist Fri 05-Jun-15 18:34:26

Hope it's ok that I am posting this here as well as other boards.
DH and I are considering having a first child. I am in a fixed term contract due to expire in 10 months. However as I have continuous service I'd be eligible for SMP. The gamble would be not having anything to return to. Things I am wondering are:

Is it mad to get pregnant knowing I wouldn't have a job to return to?

I know that if you don't return to work you have to pay back the '90% of weekly salary' bit of your SMP - but if the job no longer exists (contract has come to an end) does this apply?

Amummyatlast Fri 05-Jun-15 18:47:53

It's not true that if you don't return you have to pay the 90% of the SMP back. You don't have to pay any SMP back, it's only any additional contractual pay that might have to be paid back.

Lunastarfish Fri 05-Jun-15 18:53:00

I'm due in 6 weeks. Was 20 weeks when my fixed term role ended (as expected). However, our plan is for me to be a SAHM for a year or so, so it didn't matter too much apart from I only qualified for maternity allowance & not SMP and started maternity leave at 30 weeks when a second fixed term role ended.

addictedtosugar Fri 05-Jun-15 18:59:51

You don't have to pay back ANY SMP. Its yours to keep whatever.

Is the contract not being extended post maternity any different to it not being extended in 10 months for other reasons? Go for it, unless you want to wait til you have a permant job???

ThePartyArtist Sat 06-Jun-15 22:50:00

Thanks all...

@Amummyatlast @addictedtosugar:
my info from the HR department at work says 'If you are eligible for and receive six weeks' full maternity pay from the Council you will be required to repay it (as specified in the National Agreement) unless you return to work for a period of at least 3 months either in your original job, or if so permitted in a part time or job sharing capacity, or to a position with another local authority.'
So if my original job no longer exists because they haven't renewed the contract, where does that leave me?

@addictedtosugar - thanks, your point about whether the contract not continuing post-maternity possibly being the same as it not being extended did make me think. I guess the difference would be whether to keep job searching and putting off pregnancy in the hope I find a permanent job. It is hard though as I am not sure if / when I'll get a permanent job; if I may have another short term contract; or what... DH says jobs come and go but babies are timelimited...

addictedtosugar Sun 07-Jun-15 07:24:15

It sounds like there may be an additional level of pay above SMP.
SMP is 90% of earnings for the first 6 weeks, and about £135/week for the next 33 weeks. This is yours, and does not need repaying under any circumstances.
If the council pays full pay for the first 6 weeks, you may need to pay back the 10% additional pay over the 6 weeks - less than a weeks salary.

poocatcherchampion Sun 07-Jun-15 07:28:35

Tbh I'd go for the baby.

I say that from a point of being pregnant with my third, during which period my fixed term contract has been extended repeatedly. Local Authority too.

genome Sun 07-Jun-15 07:33:46

My job also involves short term contracts. My contract was due to end while I was on maternity and I queried it with HR. I was still entitled to the full occupational maternity package (full pay for 6 months) and I would not have been required to pay this back. In the end my contract was extended so im now back at work. I think if you qualify for maternity leave before the end of your contract (usually over 24 weeks) then I believe they have to give you the same options as you would have if you were on a permanent contract.

ThePartyArtist Sun 07-Jun-15 12:21:39

@addictedtosugar - thanks so much, I think you are right. On second reading it is referring to FULL maternity pay (i.e. 100% of salary). I don't think I get this perk.

Ok, I have done some maths and come up with the following - maths not my strong point so can anyone see something glaringly obvious I have missed?

a) Contract ends 31 March 2016.

b) To qualify for SMP I need to be working in qualifying week - which is end of the week 15 weeks before due date. So Friday 27 March 2016 would be latest possible 'qualifying week' which would mean 3 July 2016 would be latest possible due date.

c) Therefore in order for 3 July to be latest due date, 4 Oct 2015would be latest conception date.

d) Therefore -

PLAN A - try to conceive up to early Oct '15. If successful, take SMP and job hunt whilst on mat leave. Return to work (in new job - assuming contract is not extended / if it is they employ someone else) around April '16.

Buy house whilst pregnant. Job search from mat leave. (IS THIS ALL CRAZY?!)

PLAN B - if don't manage to conceive by early Oct '15, stop trying until I get a new job and have done 26 weeks' service in it, OR contract is extended (unlikely to know that until spring 2016 though).

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