How is maternity allowance calculated?

Hope this is the right place to ask - sorry if not!

I was wondering if anyone knows how government mat allowance (not statutory pay but the allowance for self-employed) is calculated?

I have tried the gov website and online calculator but it's no good to me as it just asks for your weekly/monthly earnings, but self-employed means it's never the same figure each month, so I would like to know HOW it's calculated.

Aware it's 90% of your earnings or £136 a week, whichever is lowest. But I don't know how they work out the 90% of your earnings - ie. is it based on an yearly average or on your current monthly take-home, or some other way?

Any guidance much appreciated! Thanks

Comments

  • Claree__x
    Claree__x Posts: 1,186 Forumite
    Poppy27 wrote: »
    Hope this is the right place to ask - sorry if not!

    I was wondering if anyone knows how government mat allowance (not statutory pay but the allowance for self-employed) is calculated?

    I have tried the gov website and online calculator but it's no good to me as it just asks for your weekly/monthly earnings, but self-employed means it's never the same figure each month, so I would like to know HOW it's calculated.

    Aware it's 90% of your earnings or £136 a week, whichever is lowest. But I don't know how they work out the 90% of your earnings - ie. is it based on an yearly average or on your current monthly take-home, or some other way?

    Any guidance much appreciated! Thanks

    I think it's over a qualifying period which according to http://www.dwp.gov.uk/publications/specialist-guides/technical-guidance/ni17a-a-guide-to-maternity/maternity-allowance-ma/ seems to be the 66 weeks before your baby was due?

    Your earnings are averaged over any 13 weeks in your test period. The 13 weeks do not have to be in a row and you may choose the weeks with the most earnings to help you get more MA. Earnings from all your jobs (if you have more than one) and earnings you are treated as having from self-employment will be used to work out your average weekly earnings. If your average is at least equal to £30 a week you will get MA.

    Hope this helps :)
  • Poppy27
    Poppy27 Posts: 254 Forumite
    edited 12 June 2013 at 12:49PM
    That does help a lot, thank you!!
  • frugalfrog
    frugalfrog Posts: 275 Forumite
    First Anniversary First Post Combo Breaker
    The information on this is pretty sketchy and I have spoken to DWP MA team to confirm. You may be in a similar situation to me so hope this helps:

    I am self employed (but don't earn much) & have only be self employed since September 2012. I am due in August 2013.

    What the lady said at DWP is if you pay full Class 2 NIC (the £2.40ish per week) for at least 13 weeks, the completely ignore your income & your get the full MA of £136 for 39 weeks.

    However, if you have a Small Earning Exemption certificate, then they go into the 90% of average earnings etc....

    Hope that helps :)
    Mtg May 2011 - £127,500/825610% CC - £2211/2211Argos Card 0% - £253.95/208.95
  • Aimless
    Aimless Posts: 924 Forumite
    When I claimed mine, which was a year and a half ago, if you had a small earnings exemption you got a lower amount, can't remember how much. If you didn't, you got the full amount (think it was about £128?). If there is enough time, you can cancel your exemption, pay the qualifying weeks of NI, and get the higher amount.
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