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Document What amount of pension contributions are paid when a scheme member is on maternity leave?

Member contributions
Contributions are always based on the member’s actual maternity pay whether this be normal pay or SMP. If the member goes into unpaid leave the contributions will be based on the members pay immediately prior to the unpaid leave commencing. The tiered rate of contributions that the member pays always remains the same regardless of what type of pay they are on. Where a member is on unpaid maternity leave, those contributions are normally collected on their return.
Employer contributions
Under all circumstances, employer pension contributions are based on the normal pensionable pay, as though the member was not on maternity leave. Regardless of whether the member is in receipt of paid or unpaid leave the employer’s contribution rate will always remain at 14.38% (which includes a 0.08% administration charge).

From 1 April 2019 the underlying employer contribution rate for employers changed to 20.68% including the 0.08% administration charge. However, in year 2019/2020 all employers will continue to only pay 14.38% employer contributions with HM Treasury making up the balance. The arrangements from year 2019/2020 will continue for year 2020/2021, including the specific contribution from university medical schools.

Added Years / Additional Pension / Early Retirement Reduction Buyout (ERRBO) 
Contributions during both paid and unpaid maternity leave are payable on the normal salary rate. This is the rate in payment immediately before maternity pay started.
If the member chooses not to pay contributions for the period of unpaid maternity leave then no contributions should be collected from either the member or the employer. Their pension record will be terminated on the last day of paid maternity leave and they would no longer be classed as an active member from that point.

For more information, see the Maternity Pay, Paternity Pay, Parental Leave and Adoption Leave factsheet on our website.

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