Hi, I am new to this so apologies if I should have wrote in another thread.
I have just found out I am pregnant, and me and my partner are delighted. I am just unsure about how things will work financially when the baby arrives as there is such an abundance of information available on the internet.
My situation is as follows, I am currently a university student and will be graduating in May of this year, I have a part-time job (10 hours a week) so when I graduate I will technically be employed. My partner has a full-time job currently, but in October he will be going to University and becoming a 'student'. I know he will be entitled to loans and grants through student finance (although not much). Furthermore we own a home together, so we will still have all bills, mortgages and a car to run.
I wanted to find out what I will be entitled to in terms of maternity pay? Whether I am entitled to SMP, and if I will be better off quitting my job and becoming 'unemployed' for a year. I am just worried about not being able to cope financially and having to go into full time work asap after the baby is born in October.
I can't say for sure if you will be entitled to SMP but if you have been working i think you should get maternity allowance https://www.gov.uk/maternity-allowance/overview this link should help you work it out. Congrats on your pregnancy
I can't help with the money side of things but it might be worth considering if your partner can do some of the childcare if he is only in lectures six hours a week or something? I appreciate he will have studying too on top of lectures but perhaps he could do that at the weekend while you spend time with baby? And some unis have on site nurseries especially for student parents.
You have mentioned a mortgage - will you be able to keep that up? If you do now then while you are a student and he is working then I'm sure you can!
And another idea: there are uni courses you can do two evenings a week, meaning your partner could work full time too. It would take longer but you would be better off all round, not just financially - your partner would get his degree but also keep going up the career ladder.
Sorry I should have mentioned, my partner is doing a teaching course, so he will work in school 4 days a week and then has uni one day a week or he could have done more of the childcare like you suggested but this is just not the case. But I suppose I could get evening work and weekend work when I know he will be home, but I don't think I will want to leave the little one, especially not for the first 6-12 months.
It says on the government link you posted above that I could be entitled to maternity allowance of £134.45 a week or 90% of my average weekly earnings.
As I only work 10 hours a week now, surely it would be better for me to quit my job nearer to my due date and surely thiswill this mean I will get the £134.45 a week? Is this something CAB would be able to advise me on?
I personally would start with your student welfare people at your student union as benifits will depend on your household income which will be student related next year - you can often get a mortgage holiday while on maternity which might help as well
You won't get £134 per week if you only earn £30 a week now! You gave to earn I think it's £108 or something per week to qualify for SMP otherwise you may be able to club MA but if you quit your job before the qualifying weeks you won't get anything??
They don't receive anything if they are "intentionally unemployed". You might be eligible for income support once baby is here, but I'm not sure on that. It will also depend on household assets and your bf's income.
The best bet if your bf hasn't already handed his notice in at work would probably be for him to defer for a year. Is it a PGCE he's going to do? If so he'll struggle to do well in it with a newborn in the house anyway.
I was in my final year of uni when I got pregnant. My baby was due sept after I graduated. I begin employment as soon as I graduated in May and worked up until my due date so I could receive maternity allowance of £134 a week. My advice to you would be to stay in work so you can get maternity allowance.
If you make yourself intentionally unemployed it is unlikely you will be entitled to much and you will probably be expected to live on your partners income.
Once you baby is born you will also get child benefit (around £20 per week) and depending on your earnings/circumstances some tax credits.
You need to go and speak to citizens advice / job centre / student advice centre to know exactly what you should be entitled to. Take with you information about all of your outgoings and you and your partners income.
Make a budget - work out how much money you need to get by each month as a family. Then see if you can make your income match it, if not you may have to go back to work sooner than you like or your boyfriend take a second job whilst studying.
then keep your job, as it will be beneficial. is there any way you can increase hours in may?
can you take a years mortgage holiday?
could you partner and yourself work evenings and weekends? a couple of evening each would get you both extra. also look at student creches as you may be eligible with one of you a student, allowing you to work some days also.
i would maybe aim for staying home with baby for 4 months, then trying to find some work on top, even if just a few hours.