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can i claim maternity pay if unemployed i am 31 weeks pregnant

(19 Posts)
tinkisexcitedabouthavingababy Wed 12-Nov-08 17:28:41

hi my friend mentioned that i may be able to claim maternity pay even if i am not working

if so can people tell me how to claim

ramonaquimby Wed 12-Nov-08 17:33:43

isn't it just for people who actually pay taxes? not sure how that would work.

SatHereSitting Wed 12-Nov-08 17:41:38

Hi Tink, If you've worked for at least 13 solid weeks in your pregnancy or were self employed you can claim a maternity benefit as long as you've payed enough National Insurance.

If you haven't worked for that long or haven't contributed enough or have been unemployed throughout your pregnancy but not claiming a benefit (I.e your partner pays for you), you can only claim incapacity benefit for 6 weeks following the birth, but this depends upon your circumstances. If you look on the Jobcentre plus website all the info you need is there. HTH

mrspooh Mon 17-Nov-08 18:05:44

hi, i finished my last teaching job at 4.5 months preg and didnt think i could claim any maternity money. however if you ring job centre plus 08000556688 and ask for maternity allowance form, they will send it to you. if you live in portsmouth, they dont deal with you so give another postcode on the automated answer section to get through to a real person!! i had to send in pay slips within the last yr and give employers details etc. i had to get a certificate from my employers to say why they couldnt pay me statutory maternity pay, (i had been on a short term contract). the other number that may be useful is 0845608895 which is the direct number for maternity section of job centre plus. if you havent been working they might be able to give you more detailed advice. it has taken me 11 weeks so far and my claim still isnt processed but that is due to my previous employers not job centre, they have been very helpful. you should be able to claim the 117/wk you just get it direct from gov rather than via employer. if you earned less than 90/wk i think it is you will get a % of the amount.

hope this helps, sorry its a bit rambling!!

broodymom Mon 17-Nov-08 18:46:39

I think if you have not worked at all or are on low income or tax credit you you can claim a sure start maternity grant of £500 from week 29.

if you have been working and are not entitled to smp you might be entitled to maternity allowance but you only have a certain time to claim it so i would look into it now.

I have posted a link that might help you.

This has info about it all the different allowances.

I used to work at the job centre and a lot of people think that you need to be unemployed on benefits to claim for help but its not always the case now. Good luck.

lou031205 Mon 17-Nov-08 18:49:45

Hi Tink

The rules for Maternity allowance are that you have 26 weeks employment in the time that is 6 months before pregnancy until the week before you are due to give birth. They don't have to be consecutive. Then you submit your best 13 weeks worth of pay slips with the form.

mumhadenough Mon 17-Nov-08 19:18:53

So what do you get if you haven't worked and aren't entitled to maternity allowance. I ask as I know someone else this may be of interest to.


WorzselMummage Mon 17-Nov-08 19:25:44

I was in this position when i was pregnant with dd and if you've not been working through the eligability period you dont get anything till 29 weeks when you qualify for income support if you have no other income. You get SMP if your working or MA if your not but you have to qualify ( ie, paid tax and NI )

broodymom Mon 17-Nov-08 20:13:59

You can get sure start grant if you have not worked or you may be entitled to esa (incapacity benefit) but all depends on your circumstances.

mummytobejuly09 Mon 09-Feb-09 10:41:59

im in the same situation, although i have worked for my recent employer 4 nearly 4yrs and have just been dismissed, which im curruntly going to a tribunal with them am i entitiled to any maternity benifits

mosschops30 Mon 09-Feb-09 10:51:27

hmm at why you would get paid for being pregnant hmm
if only life was that easy, maybe it is?

I think maternity pay is for people who work and pay tax and NI

Sjharrison Wed 13-Feb-13 21:48:46


Did you get this sorted? I'm being made redundant and am unsure how I go about getting SMA. The Internet is only really full info about employed or self employed mums

SeriousStuff Wed 13-Feb-13 21:53:11

Maybe this will help

parttimer79 Thu 14-Feb-13 09:41:53

I am in a similarly strange position as i am on a term time only contract teaching at a Uni whilst doing a PhD. Theoretically because of how my dates line up I qualify for SMP but my contract will have ended this year before I give birth but less than 11 weeks before...I'm waiting for HR to get back to me but those of us on variable contracts are known for getting a rather rough deal so am not holding my breath!

Anyway my understanding of MA is that as other posters have said if you have worked a certain number of weeks and earnt over a certain amount (i.e. enough to qualify for the NI threshold) then you can claim even if you are unemployed at the time of the birth. The website serious posted was helpful to me as was

Oh and mosschops I do pay NI and tax and have done for many years. If you feel like making judgy unhelpful comments I believe AIBU is that way>>>> oh and the Daily Mail is <<<<<that way... smile

Paradisefound Thu 14-Feb-13 10:46:46

I understood it that if you have been working and have qualified for smp and your employer has been paying you smp... The employer has to continue paying the you smp for your qualifying period... Regardless of whether you work for them. Seems strange but when you think about it, they are in effect just returning your NI contributions to you as smp rather than passing them on to hmrc... So it doesn't actually cost your company anything unless it is co. policy to pay you over the statutory rate of smp. If you were receiving smp and have handed in your notice or been made redundant, I think the co. has to carry on paying you smp rather than you claiming MA. Definitely get advice ASAP, many employers don't know the rules.

parttimer79 Thu 14-Feb-13 10:58:11

paradise thanks for that. I have found out from HR that is actually the case for me. So i shall stop fretting and be grateful!

jessb2706 Mon 31-Oct-16 19:20:30

Hi Guys, I am currently 18 weeks pregnant and unemployed.

I am now struggling to find work due to people not taken me on due to nearly behind half way through my pregnancy does any body know of any money I can claim?

tilleuls Mon 31-Oct-16 21:16:40

Hey, I think you can claim income support smile

AudreyBradshaw Tue 01-Nov-16 16:27:42

jessb you can apply for income support and you may be entitled to the sure start maternity grant which you can apply for after 29 weeks.

If it is your first child and you qualify for income support then you will be awarded the maternity grant. I would advise ringing the phone number as early in the day as possible as the website can send you round in circles.

(There is no point applying for maternity grant prior to 29 weeks or if you haven't been awarded any of the qualifying benefits yet, so for that one, I'd advise waiting.)

Good luck with your pregnancy and congratulations flowers

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