- Posted by: Valerie Vaz MP
- Category: News
On Tuesday 11 March 2014, the draft Statutory Instrument: The Social Security (Maternity Allowance) (Participating Wife or Civil Partner of Self-employed Earner) Regulations 2014 was debated in committee.
“The draft Statutory Instrument grants entitlement to Maternity Allowance for the spouses of self employed workers who participate in their spouse’s self-employed business but receive no income. The Minister specifically cited farmers wives or the wives of male shopkeepers as among those most likely to benefit from this change.”
“I asked the Minister how many self employed women currently claim Maternity Allowance. He told me that only around 55,000 women a year claim Maternity Allowance. I am concerned that many women may not be aware that they are entitled to Maternity Allowance, which is worth up to £136.78 per week for up to 39 weeks. Maternity Leave can be a very difficult time for women who are self employed or who participate in their spouse’s self-employed business and Maternity Allowance can be a vital lifeline.”
On 17 March 2014, the Minister of State for Work and Pensions wrote to me to clarify his answer to me: In a letter he said:
“I gave a figure of 55,000 which is the average caseload at any one point in time. You may also wish to know that we pay around 75,000 new claims to maternity allowance each year.”
More information on Maternity Allowance is available from the gov.uk website here.