*This is a collaborative guest post
You may be wondering, what on earth is maternity allowance or simply wondering how you can claim it? If so, then you’re in the right place.
Maternity Allowance is a benefit that you might be eligible for. If you’ve given birth recently and you’re on maternity leave then you’re potentially eligible to claim. This benefit is paid to you if you’re not eligible for statutory maternity pay and takes away some of the financial strain that’s put on you.
You need to also note that, if you receive other benefits it could put you over the benefit cap that’s been put in place. This is in effect for claimants between the ages of 16 and pension age.
What do you need to claim Maternity Allowance?
To be able claim maternity allowance for 39 weeks then you must fit the following criteria:
- You’re employed but cannot get statutory maternity pay
- You’re self-employed and pay Class 2 National Insurance (including voluntary National Insurance)
- You’ve recently stopped working
How can Maternity Allowance benefit you?
Maternity Allowance takes away some of that initial financial strain that can be placed on you when you have a child and you’re out of work. It’s recommended, naturally, you put the money towards your baby and the costs that come with bringing them up to the best of your ability.
You don’t need to go through your employer to claim, all you need to do us contact the Maternity Allowance customer services team who can help you with the application process and answer any questions you have.
When does Maternity Leave actually start?
This partially comes down to you and your personal preference. If you feel capable of working, you can work right up to the date of the baby’s birth. Alternatively, you can start it 11 weeks before the birth if you feel it’s what’s right for you. It all comes down to the physical demands of your job and if you want a longer maternity leave once the baby is born. It is always recommended you try and give yourself a bit of time before the birth to prepare, where possible.
It’s important to note you need to inform your employer 28 days before you intend on taking your maternity leave and claiming maternity allowance. This gives them time to prepare for you being away and find a suitable temporary replacement.
I hope I’ve been able to help you find some financial help before your birth. Don’t forget to properly think before you make the decision as it’s important you don’t leave it too late to be preparing!