Written by: michelle
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How does an employee or worker qualify for Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP)?

An employee/worker must satisfy the following conditions before she can qualify for Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP):

• She must have been continuously employed for at least 26 weeks as at the 15th week before the week the baby is due (“WBD”). This is irrespective of the number of hours worked. The 15th week is known as the Notification Week (NW). Therefore, her employment must have commenced before the Sunday that begins the 40th week before the WBD. Also, her employment must extend into the NW, although she does not need to be employed for the whole of that week;
NB: A “week” means a period of seven days beginning with Sunday and ending on Saturday. It is irrelevant that the employee’s pay week may cover a different period.
• Her average weekly earnings for the eight weeks up to and including the NW must not be less than the lower earnings limit for the payment of National Insurance contributions, which applied in the NW.
• She must still be pregnant at the 11th week before the WBD or have had the baby by that time;
• Medical evidence must be provided of the due date of the baby (i.e., the WBD), this will normally be on form Mat B1 (maternity certificate);
• At least 28 days’ notice (or, if that is not reasonably practicable, as soon as is reasonably practicable) must be given to you of the date from which she expects your liability to pay her SMP to begin;
• She must have stopped working

There is a provision safeguarding a woman’s entitlement to SMP from the 15th week before the expected week of childbirth. This means that a woman will keep her entitlement to SMP where, for whatever reason, her employment is terminated after this date.

Written by: michelle
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