Maternity Pay Question - Please help x

(14 Posts)

MNHQ have commented on this thread.

sophia18 Mon 27-Apr-20 16:52:36

Hi can you please please help/ advise?

Struggling how best to approach this situtation regarding maternity pay. I appreciate all your advice and time reading this.

Basically I have been working for an organisation for 10 years always been committed, overperformed, went above and beyond.

In August 2018, I had my first child, which meant I was entitled to enhanced maternity pay which is as follows:

(Weeks 1 – 6): Full pay
(Weeks 7 – 26): Half pay including lower rate of SMP (Not plus SMP)
(Weeks 27- 39): SMP

However, now that I am having my second child less than 24 months from returning back from maternity leave with my first child, I am going to be penalised and not entitled to the above enhanced maternity, but instead will just receive.

(Weeks 1 – 6): 9/10ths of full pay
(Weeks 27- 39): Lower rate of SMP

As the policy states ‘entitlement to enhanced maternity pay provided by the company will only be valid if the time between the return to work and the subsequent EWC is at least 24 months’.

So in affect they are paying me practically nothing as SMP is claimed back by the org from the government.

This is going to hit us hard financially this huge drop in pay, so I am looking to have a conversation with my line manager regarding this, this week. As I feel like it is a real slap in the face and that the policy is trying to dictate when I should decided to have children.
Basically it is saying space them out at least 2 years to get enhanced pay (which isn’t great itself) or be financially punished.

Only one person has had 2 kids the whole 10 years I have been there, so its not like the org has ever been impacted financially with loads of people going off to have babies.

I feel this policy is outdated and unfair.
If it applied to new employees within say their first year I could understand.

Can anyone please advise how to approach this with my manager and what to say.
I really feel like i will leave the organisation and change my perception of them if they don't budge.

Thank you so much for your replies. I am hoping to have the conversation this week.

Sophia x

OP’s posts: |
CharlieB93 Mon 27-Apr-20 16:57:00

Unfortunately if that’s what it stipulates in your contract then you probably don’t have a valid argument- I’m in the same boat, my company only offers SMP so me and OH have spent the last 8 months trying to save as much as possible. Is this something you could do so the financial hit isn’t so severe?

Sleepyquest Mon 27-Apr-20 16:59:13

Hey OP, worth a shot. Especially if it means you will return to work afterwards. Give them all the reasons why they should do it and see what they say smile

BetaCarotene Mon 27-Apr-20 17:00:22

Was this clear to you before you became pregnant with your second child?

If so, why is it only leading you to change your perception of them now?

peachypetite Mon 27-Apr-20 17:04:41

The policy is clear, I don’t think you have a leg to stand on to be honest.

MrsG010814 Mon 27-Apr-20 17:09:25

I can't imagine them changing the rules for you. At the end of the day that is the procedure and if you wanted enhanced pay you should have made sure you didn't get pregnant before that. They are not dictating when you can have children, that is your choice. Has that always been the policy or has it changed?

JoMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 27-Apr-20 17:38:38

Hi @sophia18, we're going to move your thread over to our Employment Issues topic as we think that's a better place for it.

Best of luck with it all. flowers


bookgirl1982 Mon 27-Apr-20 18:45:44

You can try and negotiate, but stamping your foot and saying it's not fair probably won't get you far.

Best to emphasise your value to the company (knowledge, loyalty etc) and therefore the benefit of securing your return through the enhanced mat pay.

You knew the policy and got pregnant anyway. They would be well within their rights to say no.

mamalicious3030 Mon 27-Apr-20 18:58:25

I would be delighted if I were you as I am on statutory pay and my salary is low. They were going to give me an improved package but then covid-19 happened and almost all staff were furloughed. This might also break us. Tbh i am just grateful I'm I am protected by my maternity rights and I'll hopefully have a job at the end of it. My company is family run in property and as you know property is at a stand still so jobs are at risk. I think the company will make it through this but there may be job losses as a result. I'm just thankful to have a job but like many others will struggle throughout this period. I'm glad I'm no longer self employed. I feel for my self employed friends.
Other than being grateful for any sort of improved package, I'd say your contract is clear. All the best.

IgglePiggleNotInBed Mon 27-Apr-20 19:02:24

You could try and negotiate but you do sound a bit entitled. I have a well paying job and my company only pay the basic 6 weeks at 90 percent and then SMP. Its crap but its their policy and I've been there 8 years. Just the way it is sometimes

flowery Mon 27-Apr-20 20:38:36

You could ask them to make an exception but there’s nothing “unfair” about it unless they are not applying it consistently or have introduced it since you got pregnant.

If you want an exception made you are best to emphasise your long service, commitment to the organisation and those types of things, rather than anything that might come across as whingy or entitled.

user1487194234 Mon 27-Apr-20 21:35:27

If you don't ask you don't get,but you can only ask ,you have no entitlement
When I was expecting my first I had no entitlement to anything other than statutory
I was the first female to have been promoted to Director level
They offered my 75% per cent if I went back after 1 month,I said no and they upped it to 8 which I accepted

Lazypuppy Tue 28-Apr-20 14:16:06

If you knew that was the policy why didn't you wait the 2 years to ensure you got the pay?
Seems solid to me, you could ask but not sure you will get anywhere

My work policy said i had to be there 2 years before getting enhanced (full pay 6 months) so we started ttc as i hit my 2 year deadline so i knew i would get the full pay.

Swish2 Mon 04-May-20 15:15:15

Sounds like maternity discrimination - treated unfairly because of absence on maternity leave. What's the point of an employer providing a package that goes above and beyond in order to attract and retain good staff (that's the whole point of it) if they're going to exclude women who have taken maternity leave in the last 2 years. It's up to the employer to decide if they have a good business case for offering better terms but it mustn't be discriminatory. I'd talk to them about it and try to negotiate something better but don't leave during your pregnancy as you'll lose the SMP as well! Good luck.

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