New Parent Leave

From April 2015 if you are a new parent and have a period of relevant child related leave the amount of pension you build up won’t be affected.

Relevant child related leave covers all periods of Ordinary Maternity Leave, Ordinary Adoption Leave and Ordinary Paternity Leave, any paid Additional Maternity Leave, Additional Adoption Leave and Additional Paternity Leave, and any paid shared parental leave.

That means that if you have a period of reduced contractual pay or no pay during relevant child related leave your pension is still worked out using an average of your usual pensionable pay (before the reduction in pay took place).

You will only pay your contributions on any pay that you receive.

If you decide to take a period of unpaid additional Maternity, Adoption (usually from week 39 to week 52) or Paternity Leave or a period of unpaid shared parental leave you will not build up pension benefits. You can elect to cover the period of pension “lost” by taking out a Shared Cost Additional Pension Contribution (SCAPC) contract.

Where a Shared APC contract is taken out to cover the pension “lost” during a period of unpaid additional Maternity, Adoption or Paternity leave or a period of unpaid shared parental leav, the cost is shared 1/3rd to the employee and 2/3rds to the employer, provided that you make an election to buy the “lost” pension within 30 days of returning to work.

For more information please see the section, 'Contribution flexibility'.