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SAHM not entitled to maternity allowance - anything I will get?

(9 Posts)
dimbo Mon 24-Aug-09 14:22:40

I'm a SAHM, possibly pregnant with my second child. I was self employed, recently stopped as I wasn't making any money from it. I am not getting anything except child tax credit now. My husband works full time.

I assumed I would be entitled to maternity allowance but I don't think I am. Is there anything else I would be entitled to if I am pregnant? I know we'd manage somehow but money is tight.

Catz Mon 24-Aug-09 14:28:11

Are you sure that you're not entitled to maternity allowance? I think the rules are that you have to have been pg or self-employed for 26 weeks out of the 66 before your due date so essentially if you were self-employed for the 6 months before you got pg then you would be entitled to it.

I am no expert on it but am claiming it in different circumstances to you. The basic info is here and I spoke to someone helpful on a helpline.

I think the amounts you get if you are self-employed depend on whether you are paying national insurance or not and/or how much you earn. If you are not quite eligible is there any way you could get the business going again for a period and pay NI or is it just not compatible with being a SAHM?

FuriousofTunbridgeWells Mon 24-Aug-09 14:38:43

Dimbo I am sorry to hijack but wanted to ask Catz - I am voluntarily leaving my job to become a SAHM. If I fell pregnant within the next 6 months would I be able to claim MA?

Catz Mon 24-Aug-09 14:52:42

Hi Furious, As I say I'm no expert (it's just that my contract is ending in mid/late pg and then I'm doing some self-employed stuff so I've been looking at this and am filling in the forms). The basic info is on that link above and the job centre can give you the forms and more info if you need it.

I think the basic rule is that you have to be employed for 26 weeks out of the 66 before your due date i.e. 6 months work in total during your pregnancy and the 6 months before it. That essentially means that if you are employed for 6 months and become pregnant the moment you leave you can claim it. If you gave up work and then became pregnant some months after then you wouldn't be eligible unless you did some more work in your pregnancy (the 26 weeks don't have to be consecutive). Have you left work yet? If not it might be worth TTC sooner rather than later if all else is equal, it comes to about £4800 if you get the full amount so it's not vast amounts but is worth having. Apologies if you are already TTC and this is an insensitive thing to say.

FuriousofTunbridgeWells Mon 24-Aug-09 14:55:53

Oh I see, sorry I think I have afternoon-brain and read it all wrong blush

Not at all insensitive am not TTC and not actually planning to blush very undecided, hence leaving - I could be in a job I am not enjoying in 1/2/3 years still thinking about what to do.

But good to know all the same, thanks

dimbo Mon 24-Aug-09 15:21:07

Thanks catz, I rang the maternity allowance helpline and the adviser said if I was due by the end of may 2010 (and I think if I was/am pregnant right now I'd be due end of april) I would be entitled to maternity allowance, so thank you for making me check again.

She said that if I'm not this time but get pregnant in the next couple of months, I could do a week or two of part time work to make up the hours needed. She also said I needed to pay my national insurance contributions before I would qualify.

I really hope I'm pregnant now, or soon. It will make things a lot harder if I'm not entitled to maternity allowance! Thanks.

BertieBotts Mon 24-Aug-09 15:23:35

If you can't get MA, you can temporarily claim Incapacity Benefit - I think it is only for 6 weeks following birth though.

Catz Mon 24-Aug-09 16:01:08

Glad to hear it Dimbo. Hope that the news is good re the pg too. I remember feeling like that too - 'if it doesn't work this month I'll be disappointed AND lose nearly £5K'!' nothing like pressure!
Hopefully it'll be easy to pick up some temp work or do a little more self-employment if you just miss it.
Good luck!

FuriousofTunbridgeWells Mon 24-Aug-09 16:13:12

Fingers crossed for you dimbo

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