An employee may need to be absent from work for various reasons including maternity leave, paternity leave, adoption leave, parental leave or sickness. The sections below explain what will happen in respect of making pension contributions during this time.
Family Leave (Maternity Leave/Adoption Leave/Paternity Leave/Additional Paternity Leave)
Adoption Leave, Paternity Leave or Additional Paternity Leave will be treated in the same way as a woman taking Maternity Leave.
For the first 39 weeks of maternity leave:
- Your employee will pay their normal rate of contributions but only on the pay they actually receive during maternity leave, this includes Statutory Maternity Pay.
- You will be expected to pay their normal contributions based on the pay they would have been receiving if they were not on maternity leave plus any shortfall in their contribution.
- Their membership will continue as normal, based on the salary they would have been receiving if they were not on maternity leave.
- If the member returns to work before the end of this period, contributions must start up again immediately.
- If the member is receiving Maternity Allowance, as their employer you are still liable to pay pension contributions even though they are receiving pay direct from the State and not from you. Member and employer contributions should be paid by you for the first 39 weeks based on the pay the member would have been receiving if they had not gone on maternity leave.
After the first 39 weeks:
- We would not expect any contributions unless the member is receiving pay.
- On the members return, they can choose whether to make extra contributions to cover the period that they have been absent. It is then at your discretion whether to pay the employer’s share. If you decline to pay the member can choose to also pay the employers share. You would need to ensure that any additional contributions are paid across in your normal monthly contribution submission.
If the member is absent for any other reason for example Parental Leave or a temporary absence and pay continues during the absence, contributions should be based on the actual salary paid. If the absence is without pay, contributions should not be paid for the period of unpaid leave.
When the employee returns to work, they will have the option to pay the contributions missed or any shortfall in contributions. It is then at your discretion whether to pay the employer’s share. If you decline to pay the member can choose to also pay the employers share. You would need to ensure that any additional contributions are paid across in your normal monthly contribution submission.
Where no contributions are being made to the scheme, there will be a maximum period of absence that will apply before the member becomes a leaver in the scheme. This period of time varies dependent on the scheme that the member is contributing to. To obtain more information on the relevant rules of your specific scheme, please select your scheme
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