SMP & SPP

Statutory Maternity, Paternity and Adoption Pay

Employees who become parents, including through adoption, are entitled to a number of payments, including Statutory Maternity, Paternity and Adoption Pay.

To qualify the employee must:

  • have been employed continuously for you for at least 26 weeks up to and including the 15th week before the expected week of childbirth - or by the week they are notified they have been matched with a child for adoption
  • have average weekly earnings at least equal to or more than the lower earnings limit for National Insurance contributions (NICs) which applies at the end of that week - £102 a week for 2011/12 - regardless of whether they are eligible to pay NICs

For further information you can call the HMRC Employer Helpline on Tel 0845 7 143 143.

Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP)

An employee entitled to statutory maternity leave may also be entitled to SMP, which is paid for up to 39 weeks. You must pay SMP even if the employee leaves work after the start of the 15th week before the expected week of childbirth.
SMP is payable at a rate of 90 per cent of the woman's average weekly earnings for the first six weeks. The remaining 33 weeks are paid at the standard rate of £128.73 per week or 90 per cent of the woman's average weekly earnings, whichever is lower.

The payments are subject to normal income tax and NIC deductions.

Mothers are entitled to a further 13 weeks of unpaid maternity leave.

Statutory Paternity Pay (SPP)

An employee entitled to paternity leave may also be entitled to SPP if they:
•    have a responsibility for the child's upbringing
•    are the child's biological father, or the mother's husband, civil partner or partner, or an adopter or the adopter's partner  
•    have worked continuously for you for at least 26 weeks by the 15th week before the expected week of childbirth - or by the date they are notified they have been matched with a child for adoption
•    have average weekly earnings at least equal to or more than the lower earnings limit - £128.73 a week for 2011/12 - regardless of whether they are eligible to pay NICs
•    have continued working for you until the child is born or placed for adoption

 
Paternity leave must be taken in periods of either one week or two continuous weeks. The rate of paternity pay is £117.18 per week, or 90 per cent of the employee's average weekly earnings, whichever is lower.



Statutory Adoption Pay (SAP)

An employee entitled to statutory adoption leave may also be entitled to SAP. This is paid for a maximum of 39 weeks at a flat rate of £128.73 per week or 90 per cent of the adopter's average weekly earnings, whichever is lower.
Statutory maternity and adoption pay and leave can start on any day of the week.
During the period of maternity and adoption leave, mothers or adopters may go into work for up to ten "keeping in touch" days without losing entitlement to SMP or SAP during that week.

You should keep detailed records of payments and leave periods.


In all cases of Statutory Maternity, Paternity and Adoption pay, you can claim most or all of this money back from the income tax and NICs paid to HMRC, who can also give advance funding if needed.

Joomla SEF URLs by Artio