Updated: Nov 17
Maternity pay is yet another statutory calculation which as an employer you have to get right. Use our maternity pay calculator to make life easier and calculate statutory maternity pay mistake-free.
Download a free version of this Maternity Pay Calculator
Maternity pay qualifying period
An employee is entitled to statutory maternity pay if:
She worked for the employer during the 15th week (the qualifying week) before the baby is due and worked for a minimum of 26 weeks before that. Effectively, she has been employed for 41 weeks before the due date
The average weekly pay over the 8 weeks before the qualifying week was higher than £123
Types of maternity pay
There are three types of maternity pay:
Statutory maternity pay which is what most employees get
Contractual maternity pay which must be at least as much as statutory pay and the company must make clear and available the maternity policies
Maternity allowance which does not come from the employer but from the government. For example, receivers may be self-employed or employees not eligible for maternity pay
How to calculate maternity pay
Step 1) The employment start date
The date when the employee commenced her employment. This is to check whether the employee has worked enough (i.e. continuously for at least 26 weeks before the qualifying week)
Step 2) The expected due date
This is to get the expected week of childbirth (EWC) which is used to get the qualifying week (i.e. the 15th week before EWC).
Step 3) Maternity leave date
This is used to help you in order to calculate the last day of full pay and the first day of maternity pay. This is because the first payday after the employee goes on maternity leave may combine her standard salary and maternity pay
Step 4) Last payslip
In order for us to produce a payment calendar, we need to know a day you regularly paid your employee. If the last payslip happened on an irregular payday, insert a regular payday so that we will be able to create a more accurate payment schedule breakdown
Step 5) Average weekly earnings
You need to calculate the average weekly earnings over the 8 weeks up to the last payday before the end of the qualifying week. For the first 6 weeks you need to pay 90% of the employee's average weekly earnings, while for the remaining 33 weeks you will need to pay the minimum between £156.66 per week and 90% of the employee's weekly earnings
If you are self-employed or you cannot receive statutory maternity pay, you can still receive maternity allowance from the government which goes from £27 to £156.66 a week for 39 weeks. This will depend on how long you have been registered with HMRC and how much Class 2 National Insurance contributions you have paid. If you want to increase the amount of allowance you receive, you can opt to pay more Class 2 National Insurance contribution. You can read more about maternity allowance at the following link
When an employee can start taking SMP
SMP usually starts when the employee starts her maternity leave which can be as early as 11 weeks before the expected the due date. SMP automatically triggers if the employee was sick the month before the due date and the employee is entitled to SMP
Is maternity pay taxable?
Yes, maternity pay is taxed as a normal wage as well as National Insurance is deducted
Find this maternity pay calculator useful?
Checkout a list of other free Zelt HR calculators, which will help make your life easier
Checkout this other useful guides towards calculating maternity pay