Maternity Leave FAQs
The following information summarises the key points in relation to Maternity Leave at Queen’s University.
When can I start my maternity leave?
You can begin your maternity leave on any date after the 11th week before your expected week of childbirth. Your midwife will confirm your expected week of childbirth on the MATB1 form around your 20th week of pregnancy.
I gave a date that I would like to start my maternity leave, but now I want to change it. Can I do that?
Yes. You are required to tell us in writing at least 28 days prior to the new date.
What happens to my maternity leave if my baby is born early?
Maternity leave is triggered by childbirth. If your baby is born early your maternity leave will therefore start immediately.
What happens if I am sick during my pregnancy?
Simply follow the same absence reporting procedure and notify your line manager of the reason for your absence accordingly. If you are absent for pregnancy related reasons within four weeks of your expected week of childbirth, your maternity leave will automatically commence.
I am on a fixed term contract. How does that affect my entitlements?
You will have the same entitlements to pay and leave providing you meet the qualifying criteria. If your fixed term contract ends during your maternity leave and is not renewed, the entitlement to the enhanced University maternity pay will cease but SMP will continue to be paid.
What happens to my pension contributions when I am on maternity leave?
Please contact a member of the pensions team who will be able to provide more information.
Do I have to agree to work during my ml if my manager asks me?
The University, as an employer, is allowed to make reasonable contact with employees whilst they are on maternity leave. You are not obliged to do any work or attend any work-related events during maternity leave, however if you and your manager both agree, then you can work up to a total of 10 days during your leave. These are called ‘Keeping in Touch’ (KIT) days.
Do I have to agree in advance if I want to come to work for a keeping in touch day?
Yes, you and your manager should agree in advance when you are going to attend work for one of your Keeping in Touch Days to allow both parties to make any necessary arrangements.
What if I want to change my return date once my leave commences?
We will write to you to confirm the date you are expected to return to work after your maternity leave. If you want to return sooner or later than this date then please confirm this in writing, at least 28 days before the date you intended to return to work.
Can I return to work on a phased basis?
This may be possible depending on operational requirements. Please discuss this with your manager.
When I return to work, I want to change my hours of work. What do I need to do?
You can make a flexible working request prior to your return to work under our Flexible Working Policy. You can discuss your plans with your manager at any time.
What happens if I choose not to return to work after my maternity leave?
If you decide not to return to work, you will need to provide written notice in accordance with your contract of employment.