Here we provide an overview of all money-related dates to do with your pregnancy.
When you find out you're pregnant, there will be lots to think about and plan for. Many parents-to-be will start thinking about their finances, what impact a new baby will have on them and the implications of maternity/paternity leave and pay. Here we look at how to plan ahead and make sure you have key dates in your diary.
This baby money timeline from the Money Advice Service lists of all the money-related dates to do with your pregnancy and new baby.
Early in pregnancy
Notify your employer of your pregnancy when you feel ready. Notify your employer of your pregnancy in writing if you need health and safety adjustments to your working conditions or hours of work. Notify your employer of your antenatal appointments e.g. appointment card (apart from the first appointment).
Weeks 18 – 26 approximately
These weeks are used for calculating your average earnings for Statutory Maternity Pay.
If your baby is stillborn after the end of week 24, or is born alive at any time but dies afterwards, you are entitled to maternity leave and pay (if you meet the normal qualifying conditions).
15th week before EWC
This is the latest week for giving your employer notice of the date you want to start your maternity leave and pay. You must give your employer your MATB1 maternity certificate. If you don’t qualify for SMP, you can claim Maternity Allowance.
Before maternity leave
Meet with your employer to discuss plans for covering your maternity leave, plan your annual leave and talk about contact during maternity leave. If you or your spouse/partner wish to take shared parental leave you must give at least eight weeks’ notice.
11th week before EWC
This is the earliest you can start your maternity leave and pay. It is up to you to decide when you want to start your maternity leave.
11th week before EWC to three months after the date your baby is born
You can claim the Sure Start Maternity Grant if you are receiving a qualifying benefit or Child Tax Credit above the family element.
4 weeks before EWC
This is the earliest your employer can trigger the start of your maternity leave if you are off work for a pregnancy-related reason.
EWC starts on a Sunday
This is the week your baby is due. The exact date will be on your MATB1 maternity certificate that you can get from your midwife or GP from week 16.
Date of birth
If your baby is born early and you are at work your maternity leave and pay will start on the day after the birth.
Two weeks after the birth/four weeks for factory workers
Compulsory maternity leave
You must stay off work for this period.
Four months before your maternity leave ends
Make a request for flexible work if you want to return to work part-time or to change your hours, days or place of work.
39 weeks from the start of your maternity leave and pay
This is the week your Statutory Maternity Pay or Maternity Allowance will end.
52 weeks from the start of your maternity leave and pay
This is the week your maternity leave will end. You are due back to work at the end of maternity leave. If you want to return to work earlier you must give your employer at least eight weeks’ notice. If you decide not to return to work you should resign in the usual way giving your employer notice.
Updated April 2016
Our support line offers practical and emotional support with feeding your baby and general enquiries for parents, members and volunteers: 0300 330 0700.
You might find attending one of our Early Days groups helpful as they give you the opportunity to explore different approaches to important parenting issues with a qualified group leader and other new parents in your area.
Make friends with other parents-to-be and new parents in your local area for support and friendship by seeing what NCT activities are happening nearby.
Maternity Action, a national charity promoting the health and well-being of all pregnant women, their partners and children, has further information on maternity rights.
See also the benefits calculator, posted by Turn2us, a national charity which helps people to access the benefits which are available to them.