Accept Cookies?
Provided by OpenGlobal E-commerce

0115 856 1492

[email protected]

  
  
  

Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP): Overview 2014-15

 

Key points

  • An employee who is expecting a baby has the right to 26 weeks of 'Ordinary Maternity Leave' and 26 weeks 'Additional Maternity Leave' - making one year in total
  • As long as they give you proper notice they can take this no matter how long they've worked for you, how many hours they work or how much they're paid
  • Whether you have to pay SMP to an expectant employee depends on how long they've worked for you and how much they earn
  • The employee has to provide you with evidence of when the baby's due and give you notice of when they want you to start paying their SMP.
  • You normally pay SMP in the same way you pay wages
  • SMP must be paid as money. You can't give something else instead, such as payments in kind (e.g. goods), board and lodging or other services
  • You willl normally be able to recover some or all of the SMP you pay
 

 

 

Eligibility

To qualify for SMP an employee must have:

worked for you continuously - full or part-time - for at least 26 weeks up to and into the 15th week before the week the baby is due (the qualifying week)

average earnings at least equal to the Lower Earnings Limit (LEL) for National Insurance contributions (NICs) in the qualifying week - for 2013-14 this is £111 a week and for 2013-14 this is £109 a week

given you the right paperwork confirming the pregnancy and sufficient notice of when they would like the SMP payments to start 

If your employee's earnings are below the LEL, or they're not entitled to SMP for some other reason, they may be entitled to Maternity Allowance from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

          

Did you know?

StarYou must not pay SMP unless you have received suitable evidence of the pregnancy (e.g. MAT B1)

StarPayments of SMP count as earnings. You must deduct PAYE tax and NICs from them in the usual way

StarYou must keep all records for at least three years after the end of the tax year to which they relate.

 
 

Rates

  Non- eligibility & Disputes
 
 

If an employee is eligible for SMP, for the first six weeks you must pay them at the rate of 90 per cent of their average weekly earnings. For the next 33 weeks you must pay them the lower of the following:

  • £138.18 for pay weeks commencing on or after 6 April 2014
  • 90 per cent of their average weekly earnings
 

If you determine that your employee isn't entitled to be paid SMP, you must tell them your decision and the reasons for it. You must do this within 28 days of receiving your employee's notice of absence or the date she gave birth if this is earlier. This can be done using form SMP1.

Where you have already started to make payments of SMP and before the end of the pay period you decide your employee is no longer entitled to any further payments of SMP you must:

  • tell your employee your decision and your reasons for it
  • give them details of the last week they are entitled to SMP
  • tell them the total number of weeks SMP is payable

You must do this within seven days of entitlement ending. This can be done using form SMP1.

If your employee doesn't agree with you, they have the right to ask you for a written statement showing:

  • the weeks - if any - for which you think you should pay SMP
  • how much SMP you think your employee is entitled to
  • why you don't think you should pay SMP for other weeks in the pay period

Your employee can ask for a written statement at any time. If the request is reasonable you must give them the statement within a realistic time - for example, within seven days of being asked for it.

 
 

Forms & Record Keeping

You will need a number of forms when dealing with SMP.

Form MAT B1 Maternity Certificate

Your employee gives you this form to confirm that they're expecting a baby. It's signed by a doctor or midwife who'll give it to your employee after the 20th week of pregnancy. You mustn't pay SMP unless you get this form or similar evidence of pregnancy from your employee.

Record Keeping

The records you'll need to keep include:

  • evidence of pregnancy - form MAT B1, or a copy if you handed it back with form SMP1
  • the payment dates and amounts of SMP paid
  • the date the pay period began
  • any weeks in the 39 week period when SMP wasn't paid and the reason why

You must use the following to keep records of the payments of SMP you make and the amounts you recover:

  • employee payroll record
  • Full Payment Submission (FPS)
  • Employer Payment Summary (EPS)
                       

 

Ordinary Statutory Paternity Pay (OSPP): Overview

 

Key points

  • Employees may be entitled to Ordinary Statutory Paternity Pay (OSPP) if their partner has a baby or adopts a child
  • OSPP replaces normal earnings and helps the employee take time off to care for the child or support the mother
  • Whether you have to pay OSPP to an employee depends on how long they've worked for you, how much they earnand when the baby is due or the date of adoption
  • The employee has to provide you witha declaration covering family commitment andgive you notice of when they want you to start paying their OSPP
  • You normally pay OSPP in the same way you pay wages
  • You willl normally be able to recover some or all of the OSPP you pay
 

 

 

Eligibility

Your employee may be entitled to OSPP for a birth if they have responsibility for the baby's upbringing, are taking time off to support the mother or care for the baby and they're either:

  • the baby's biological father
  • the mother's husband or partner - including a female partner in a same sex couple

Where a couple adopts a child, the partner, male or female, who's not claiming Statutory Adoption Pay (SAP) may be able to claim OSPP. Your employee may be entitled to OSPP for adoption if they're either:

  • adopting a child with their partner
  • the partner of someone adopting a child on their own

In this situation, the adoption must also be being arranged through an adoption agency in the UK, or for adoption from abroad the adopter has to have received Official Notification.

To qualify for OSPP an employee must have:

✓ worked for you continuously - full or part-time - for at least 26 weeks up to and into the 15th week before the week the baby is due or for at least 26 weeks by the end of the week in which they were notified that they had been matched with a child

✓  continued to work right up until the date the baby was born or the child was placed with the adopter

✓ average earnings at least equal to the Lower Earnings Limit (LEL) for National Insurance contributions (NICs) in the qualifying week - for 2014-15 this is £111 a week and for 2013-14 this is £109 a week

✓ given you the right paperwork and sufficient notice of when they would like the OSPP payments to start 

If your employee's earnings are below the LEL, or they're not entitled to OSPP for some other reason, they may be entitled to other finiancial support from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

           Did you know?

StarYou must not pay OSPP unless you have received the declaration of family commitment

StarPayments of OSPP count as earnings. You must deduct PAYE tax and NICs from them in the usual way

StarYou must keep all records for at least three years after the end of the tax year to which they relate. 

Non- eligibility & Disputes

If you determine that your employee isn't entitled to be paid OSPP, you must tell them your decision and the reasons for it. this can be done using form OSPP1.

  • OSPP birth cases - you must do this within 28 days of receiving your employee's notice of absence
  • OSPP adoption cases - you must do this within 28 days by the end of the 7 day period that starts on the date on which the adopter is notified of having been matched with a child

Where you have already started to make payments of OSPP and before the end of the pay period you decide your employee is no longer entitled to any further payments of OSPP you must:

  • tell your employee your decision and your reasons for it
  • give them details of the last week they are entitled to OSPP
  • tell them the total number of weeks OSPP is payable

You must do this within seven days of entitlement ending. This can be done using form OSPP1

Also make a copy of your employee's declaration - form SC3, SC4, or SC5 or equivalent - and give the original back to them with any other evidence they provided you with.

If your employee doesn't agree with you, they have the right to ask you for a written statement showing:

  • the weeks - if any - for which you think you should pay OSPP
  • how much OSPP you think your employee is entitled to
  • why you don't think you should pay OSPP for other weeks in the pay period

Your employee can ask for a written statement at any time. If the request is reasonable you must give them the statement within a realistic time - for example, within seven days of being asked for it.


 
 

Rates

If your employee is eligible for OSPP you must pay them the lower of the following:

  • £138.18 for pay weeks commencing on or after 6 April 2013
  • 90 per cent of their average weekly earnings
 
 

Record Keeping

The records you'll need to keep include:

  • the declaration of family commitment, or a copy if you handed it back with form OSPP1 
  • the payment dates and amounts of OSPP paid
  • the date the pay period began
  • any OSPP that wasn't paid and the reason why

You must use the following to keep records of the payments of OSPP you make and the amounts you recover:

  • employee payroll record
  • Full Payment Submission (FPS)
  • Employer Payment Summary (EPS)

Remember that almost all employers are required to file their payroll information online to HMRC via the FPS and EPS. You must keep all these records for at least three years after the end of the tax year they relate to.

                       

 

 

We calculate all statutory payments for you - ensuring staff get paid everything they are entitled to and making all reclaims from HMRC on your behalf

Fixed price payroll service from just £9.95* per run