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Question about entitlement to Maternity Allowance

(4 Posts)
arolf Fri 10-Jul-09 10:09:32

I returned to the UK from the USA in May of this year, following a 9 month period of employment over there. I started a job in the UK on May 18th 2009, and am expecting a baby on September 20th 2009. I plan to go on maternity leave from September 18th 2009, provided that the baby is not born early. This will mean I have been working full time for 17 weeks.

Before moving to the USA I was a full time student, and did some temporary teaching and bar work, for which I was taxed and paid NI contributions accordingly (from January to June of 2008). I am a British citizen.

I am aware that I do not qualify for Statutory Maternity Pay, but am not sure about Maternity Allowance. Some people at my workplace have assured me that I am eligible for MA, others say definitely not.

I'm not expecting to qualify for MA, but read in Emma's Diary that I may be able to claim it - I'm just not sure who to ask, and whether I'm being totally unreasonable to expect anything!

If anyone has any insight or advice, it would be very welcome - even if you tell me that I haven't a hope!

thanks in advance

flowerybeanbag Fri 10-Jul-09 10:16:33

I don't think you will be entitled to it, no. You need to have been working for at least 26 weeks during the 66 weeks prior to your due date, 66 weeks being the 40 weeks of your pregnancy and the 26 weeks before that as well.

However here is the DWP's official technical guidance to MA, it's several pages long, I've linked to the introduction/eligibility page.

flowerybeanbag Fri 10-Jul-09 10:18:34

Here about if you've been abroad, there are arrangements for people who have been to EEA countries or a few others, not including the US and also details of where to get more info if you've been abroad.

arolf Fri 10-Jul-09 10:19:01

thanks - that's what I thought - I've been combing through the DWP pages, but getting increasingly confused!

Oh well thanks for your help!

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