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Maternity Policy - North Hertfordshire College

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Maternity Policy - North Hertfordshire College Powered By Docstoc
					                              MATERNITY POLICY
1    INTRODUCTION

     1.1   North Hertfordshire College is committed to equality of opportunity and
           seeks to ensure that all of its policies and procedures are applied fairly and
           equitably to all staff. The College’s Equality & Diversity Policy, and the
           concepts set out within that policy and other related policies and schemes,
           is fundamental to the operation of all policies and procedures.

     1.2   This policy sets out the rights, entitlements and obligations of employees
           who are pregnant and wish to avail themselves of the maternity benefits
           provided by the College.

     1.3   In order to retain her rights to maternity leave and maternity pay the
           employee must comply in full with the content of this policy.

     1.4   The College has an obligation to pay Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP), in
           accordance with legislation, to those employees who are eligible to receive
           it. This policy explains entitlement to both statutory and contractual
           maternity benefits.

2    INITIAL NOTIFICATION TO THE COLLEGE

     2.1   An employee who is pregnant is encouraged to notify her line manager at
           an early stage during her pregnancy. This will give the College an
           opportunity to undertake the required risk assessments and arrange an
           appointment with Human Resources to explain the College’s maternity
           procedures and enable the employee to ask any questions she may have.

     2.2   An employee who is pregnant must inform Human Resources of her
           pregnancy, Expected Week of Childbirth (EWC) and planned date for the
           start of her maternity leave at least 15 weeks before the EWC.

3    ANTENATAL CARE

     3.1   An employee who is pregnant may take time off with pay, in order to
           receive antenatal care, provided she complies with the following:

               all antenatal appointments must be made on the advice of a
                registered medical practitioner, registered midwife or registered health
                visitor

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Issue date: 05 January 2009
               the employee must advise her manager in writing of the date and time
                of her appointments as far in advance as possible so that
                arrangements can be made to cover her work as appropriate
               after her first appointment, the employee should be able to produce
                confirmation from her registered medical practitioner, registered
                midwife or registered health visitor that she is pregnant together with
                her ante-natal appointment card or other evidence that her
                appointment has been made, if asked by her manager
               where possible appointments should take place outside working hours
                or as close to the start or end of the working day as possible
               if an employee works part-time she will, wherever reasonably
                practicable, be expected to make appointments outside normal
                working hours.

4    MATERNITY LEAVE

     4.1   Notice of Pregnancy/Maternity Leave Commencement

           4.1.1 In order to qualify for maternity leave and, if appropriate, maternity
                 pay an employee must inform the Human Resources Department in
                 writing at least 15 weeks before the EWC:
                  that she is pregnant
                  the expected week of childbirth
                  when she intends her maternity leave to start
                  If she wishes to claim contractual maternity pay, she should also
                     confirm that she intends to return to work at the end of the
                     maternity leave period

           4.1.2 If it is not reasonably practicable for the employee to give this notice
                 by the 15th week before the EWC then she must provide the
                 information as soon as reasonably practicable.

           4.1.3 Where possible, the employee must enclose with the written
                 notification a certificate (Form MATB1) from her registered medical
                 practitioner, registered midwife or registered health visitor
                 confirming the EWC.

           4.1.4 The Human Resources Department will write to confirm the
                 expected date of return, if the employee takes her full entitlement to
                 maternity leave, no later than four weeks from the receipt of
                 notification from the employee.

           4.1.5 Provided that she has given the required notice to the College the
                 employee may decide when she wishes to start her maternity leave.
                 The start of the maternity leave may be at any time after the
                 beginning of the 11th week before the EWC.

           4.1.6 If the employee wishes to change the date for commencement of
                 OML, she must write to Human Resources giving notice of the new
                 date at least 28 days in advance of the intended start date for
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Issue date: 05 January 2009
                   maternity leave. If it is not reasonably practicable to give such
                   notice of change of intention, the employee must provide the
                   information as soon as reasonably practicable.

           4.1.7 If the employee is absent from work with a pregnancy-related illness
                 during the four weeks before the start of the EWC, the College may
                 require her to start her maternity leave from the day of the first
                 absence during this period.

           4.1.8 Where childbirth occurs before the notified leave date or before she
                 has notified the College of this date, maternity leave will start on the
                 day after the birth.

     4.2   Notice of Birth
           The employee should inform the Human Resources Department of the
           actual date that her baby was born as soon as is reasonably practicable.
           This may be verbally or in writing.

     4.3   Compulsory Maternity Leave
           It is unlawful for the College to permit employees to return to work within
           two weeks of childbirth. No employee may therefore return to work within
           two weeks of childbirth.

     4.4   Statutory Maternity Leave

           4.4.1 In accordance with legislation all pregnant employees, regardless of
                 length of service or hours worked, are entitled to a period of up to
                 52 weeks Maternity Leave. Statutory Maternity Pay will be paid for
                 some of this period (see 5.1 below).

           4.4.2 The Ordinary Maternity Leave (OML) period is 26 weeks, followed
                 by Additional Maternity Leave (AML) of 26 weeks.

           4.4.3 OML cannot start earlier than the beginning of the 11th week before
                 the EWC nor later than the actual date of the baby’s birth.

           4.4.4 If the employee’s baby is born before she has notified the College
                 of the commencement of maternity leave, maternity leave is
                 deemed to commence on the date of the birth.

           4.4.5 In the case of 4.4.3 or 4.4.4 above, the employee is required to
                 notify the College as soon as is reasonably practicable in writing
                 that she is absent from work because of pregnancy or has given
                 birth.

           4.4.6 During the period of OML, the employee is entitled to receive all her
                 contractual benefits, except for salary. This means that contractual
                 annual leave entitlement will continue to accrue and pension
                 contributions will continue to be made provided that the employee is
                 receiving statutory maternity pay (SMP). Employee contributions
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Issue date: 05 January 2009
                       will be based on actual pay, while employer contributions will be
                       based on the salary that the employee would have received had
                       she not gone on maternity leave. Salary will be replaced by SMP if
                       the employee is eligible to receive it.

               4.4.7 Employees are encouraged to take any outstanding annual leave
                     due to them before the commencement of ordinary maternity leave.
                     Employees are reminded that holiday must be taken in the year that
                     it is earned and therefore if the holiday year is due to end during
                     maternity leave, the employee should take the full year's entitlement
                     before starting her maternity leave.

               4.4.8 During the period of additional maternity leave (AML), the
                     employee's contract of employment continues in force and she is
                     entitled to receive all her contractual benefits, except for salary.
                     Salary will be replaced by SMP for the first 13 weeks of AML if the
                     employee is eligible to receive it (see 5.1.1 below). The remaining
                     13 weeks of AML are unpaid. Contractual annual leave entitlement
                     will continue to accrue during AML.

5        MATERNITY PAY

         5.1   Statutory Maternity Pay

               5.1.1 An employee is entitled to up to 39 weeks Statutory Maternity Pay
                     (SMP) where:

                        she has completed 26 weeks’ continuous service at the 15 th
                         week before the EWC
                        she has given notice of the start of maternity leave in
                         accordance with 2 above
                        she has average weekly earnings of not less than the National
                         Insurance lower earnings limit (see appendix 1)
                        she stops working wholly or partly because of her pregnancy or
                         childbirth

               5.1.2 SMP will be payable from the start of the week after the employee’s
                     SML starts, but from no earlier than the 11th week before the EWC.

               5.1.3 SMP will still be payable if the employee leaves the post at or after
                     the 11th week before the EWC, regardless of whether or not she
                     intends to return to work after her baby is born.

               5.1.4 Rates of SMP are attached at Appendix 1.

               5.1.5 If the employee becomes eligible for a pay rise between the start of
                     the original calculation period and the end of her maternity leave
                     (whether ordinary maternity leave or additional maternity leave), the
                     higher or standard rate of SMP will be recalculated to take account
                     of the employee's pay rise, regardless of whether SMP has already
    Maternity Policy (Updated)
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    Issue date: 05 January 2009
                   been paid.     This means that the employee's SMP will be
                   recalculated and increased retrospectively, or that she may qualify
                   for SMP if she did not previously. The employee will be paid a lump
                   sum to make up any difference between SMP already paid and the
                   amount payable as a result of the pay rise.

           5.1.6 SMP is treated as earnings and is therefore subject to PAYE and
                 national insurance deductions.

           5.1.7 If an employee is not eligible for SMP she should apply to the local
                 Jobcentre Plus to see if she is entitled to maternity allowance.

           5.1.8 If the employee is awarded a pay increase between the beginning
                 of the original calculation period and the end of her period of
                 statutory maternity leave, her normal weekly earnings for the
                 purposes of calculating entitlement to SMP will be recalculated as if
                 the pay increase applied in each week of the relevant period,
                 regardless of whether SMP has already been paid. The employee
                 will be paid retrospectively for any difference between the SMP
                 already paid and the mount payable as a result of the pay increase.

           5.1.9 An employee will lose her right to receive SMP if:

                    she is taken into legal custody
                    she starts work for another employer
                    she returns to work (excluding ‘keeping in touch’ days – see 8
                     below)

     5.2   Enhanced Maternity Pay

           5.2.1 An employee who is eligible to receive SMP in accordance with 5.1
                 above who, at the beginning of the 15th week before the EWC, has
                 at least one year’s continuous service with the College will be
                 entitled to receive enhanced maternity pay (EMP) if she returns to
                 work after her maternity leave.

           5.2.2 The entitlement to EMP will be calculated as half the net basic
                 salary to which the employee would be entitled between weeks 7-
                 18 of the maternity pay period, in addition to the SMP paid,
                 provided the combined net basic salary and SMP payable would not
                 exceed the full net basic salary at that time.

           5.2.3 When an employee who is entitled to EMP returns to work following
                 the end of her maternity leave period, the College will pay the EMP
                 entitlement outlined in 5.2.2. above through the payroll in three
                 equal instalments. If the employee leaves the employment at any
                 time during the first three months of her return from maternity leave
                 she will not be entitled to any further EMP payments.



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Issue date: 05 January 2009
6    EARLY BIRTHS, LATE BIRTHS AND STILLBIRTHS

     6.1   Early Births
           If the baby is born earlier the expected but after the employee has started
           to receive SMP this will continue to be paid and should not affect the
           return to work date at the end of the maternity leave period. If the baby is
           born before the employee has started to receive SMP, or commenced
           maternity leave, the early birth will trigger maternity leave and SMP where
           she is entitled to this

     6.2   Late Births
           If the baby is born after the EWC, SMP and maternity leave are not
           affected.

     6.3   Stillbirths
           In the unfortunate event of a stillbirth, the employee continues to be
           entitled to SMP and maternity leave if the child is born after the 24th week
           of pregnancy.

7    PENSION CONTRIBUTIONS

     7.1   An employee in receipt of remuneration, whether salary, or SMP, or both,
           during her maternity leave will be treated as though she is working
           normally for the purposes of access to occupational pension scheme
           membership and benefits. The College will pay the normal contribution
           towards the pension scheme for the period of paid maternity leave. The
           employee will be deducted contributions on the amount of remuneration or
           SMP she is in receipt of.

     7.2   If an employee wishes to continue pension contributions during her period
           of unpaid maternity leave she should contact the pension scheme to
           obtain appropriate advice on how this can be done.

8    KEEPING IN TOUCH

     8.1   ‘Keeping in Touch’ (KIT) days may be used to enable the employee to
           attend work without losing her right to SMP or EMP. Up to 10 KIT days
           may be undertaken during the maternity leave period.

     8.2   KIT days can take place at any time during the maternity leave period
           except during the 2 weeks immediately after childbirth.

     8.3   KIT days may be used for training, meetings or other activities that help
           the employee keep in touch.

     8.4   KIT days can only be arranged by mutual agreement. There is no
           obligation for an employee to undertake work, nor is there any obligation
           on the College to provide work. If a KIT day is agreed the purpose should

Maternity Policy (Updated)
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Issue date: 05 January 2009
           be agreed in advance so that both parties are clear what the employee will
           be doing.

     8.5   Where an employee works a KIT day she will be paid her normal salary for
           the hours worked. This should be claimed by notifying Human Resources
           of the day and hours worked.

9    RETURNING TO WORK

     9.1   It is assumed that the employee will take her full statutory maternity leave
           entitlement of 52 weeks. The date for return will be confirmed in a letter
           issued by Human Resources prior to the commencement of SML. If the
           employee wishes to return early she must notify the College of her
           intention to do so in accordance with 9.2 below.

     9.2   If the employee wishes to return to work at any point before the end of
           SML she must give the College at least 8 weeks’ written notice of the date
           she intends to return. If she attempts to return to work earlier without
           giving this written notice the College may postpone her return. The return
           date will not be beyond the 8 weeks’ notice period, nor beyond the end of
           the statutory 52 week maternity leave period. This will be notified to the
           employee in writing.

     9.3   If an employee decides she wishes to change the intended date of return
           notified in accordance with 9.2 above she is required to give 8 weeks’
           notice of the new return date.

     9.4   An employee returning to work at the end of the AML period does not need
           to give notice of her return, but should turn up for work on the first working
           day after the end of AML.

     9.5   If the employee decides not to return to work after maternity leave, she
           must give notice of resignation as soon as possible and in accordance with
           the terms of her contract of employment. If the notice period would expire
           after maternity leave has ended, the College may require the employee to
           return to work for the remainder of the notice period.

     9.6   At the end of a period of OML the employee is normally entitled to return to
           the same job that she left prior to maternity leave. If the pregnancy had
           necessitated the College giving the employee a temporary assignment
           before she went on maternity leave for health and safety reasons, she will
           normally return to the job that she was doing prior to the temporary
           assignment.

     9.7   Where the employee is returning from AML and it is not reasonably
           practicable for her to return to her original job, the College will endeavour,
           where possible, to offer her an alternative post on terms and conditions
           and remuneration which are not less favourable than those which would
           have been applicable had she not been absent from work on maternity
           leave.
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Issue date: 05 January 2009
     9.8   If, following maternity leave, an employee provides a doctor’s statement
           stating that she is unfit for work the normal College rules on sick leave will
           apply.

     9.9   An employee who worked full-time prior to her maternity leave has no
           automatic right to return to work on a part-time basis or to make other
           changes to her working patterns. However, all requests for part-time work
           or other flexible working arrangements will be considered in line with the
           College’s operational requirements. If an employee would like this option
           to be considered, she should write to her line manager setting out her
           proposals as soon as possible in advance of her return date, sending a
           copy to Human Resources, so that there is adequate time for full
           consideration of the request. The request should:

                  state that it is an application for a change to the employee's terms
                   and conditions of employment
                  specify the change applied for and the date on which it is proposed
                   the change will become effective
                  explain what effect (if any) the employee thinks making the change
                   applied for would have on the College/area of work and how, in the
                   employee's opinion, any such effect might be dealt with
                  explain the employee's relationship to the child or adult in question
                  state whether a previous application for flexible working has been
                   made by the employee to the employer and, if so, when
                  be dated


10 GENERAL

     10.1 Maternity leave is not treated as sick leave and is not therefore taken into
          account when calculating any period of sick leave entitlement.

     10.2 To enable the employee to be informed of staff vacancies and to be
          maintain contact during her maternity leave, she will continue to be able to
          access her College IT user account remotely or on-site during her
          maternity leave (subject to the provisions of the policy). If she wishes to
          be sent updates rather than receive them via e-mail the employee should
          notify HR of this prior to taking maternity leave.

     10.3 Periods of maternity leave are regarded as continuous service for the
          purposes of calculating entitlements to employment benefits.

     10.4 If, in the early months of pregnancy, an employee is advised by a medical
          practitioner to absent herself from work because of the risk of rubella she
          will be entitled to full pay for the period of absence.




Maternity Policy (Updated)
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Issue date: 05 January 2009
APPENDIX 1: MATERNITY PAY



      RATES FROM 06 APRIL 2008:

      SMP
         The first 6 weeks are paid at 90% of normal earnings over the previous 8
          weeks (or SMP if this is greater than 90% of normal pay)
         The remaining 33 weeks are paid at SMP rate of £117.18 per week, or
          90% of earnings if that figure is below £117.18 per week

      National Insurance Lower Earnings Limit
          Lower earnings limit £90.00 per week


      RATES FROM 05 APRIL 2009:

      SMP
         The first 6 weeks are paid at 90% of normal earnings over the previous 8
          weeks (or SMP if this is greater than 90% of normal pay)
         The remaining 33 weeks are paid at SMP rate of £123.06 per week, or
          90% of earnings if that figure is below £123.06 per week

      National Insurance Lower Earnings Limit
          Lower earnings limit £95.00 per week




Maternity Policy (Updated)
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Issue date: 05 January 2009

				
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