Do I have to repay my maternity pay if I don't go back to work?

Some employers offer contractual maternity pay that is better than Statutory Maternity Pay (SMP) and this is something that trade unions can negotiate with employers. If you receive contractual maternity pay and you decide not to return to your job, you only have to repay it if this was agreed in advance or specifically stated in your maternity policy or your contract. In these cases, you would only have to pay back the extra contractual pay, not the SMP part of your maternity pay.

Some employers offer new mothers a lump sum of money after they have returned to work after maternity leave and remained in post for a period of time. This is obviously not something a new mother would qualify for if she did not return to work after maternity leave.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.