Maternity Leave Allowance for B.C. Government Employees
Maternity leave allowance supplements the amount you receive from employment insurance (EI) for the duration of your maternity leave.
You are eligible for the allowance if you are receiving EI benefits and are
- A regular (full- or part-time) employee
- An auxiliary employee who is eligible for benefits as per your collective agreement or terms and conditions of employment
The maternity allowance amount is the difference between 85 percent of your basic pay and the gross maternity benefit you receive from EI.
Employment Insurance requires a one-week waiting period before they process your first payment. If you qualify for the maternity allowance, we will provide a benefit waiting period allowance of up to 85 percent of your basic pay for the waiting period.
Salary Used to Calculate the Allowance
The allowance is calculated on your base position and may increase with certain wage increases that occur during your leave. Check your collective agreement to find out what increases apply.
If you are on a temporary appointment at the time of your leave, your allowance is calculated on the salary stated in your temporary appointment letter. If your temporary appointment is scheduled to end part way through your leave, your allowance is recalculated using the basic pay amount for your base position for the remainder of your leave.
Income Tax Implications
Income tax is deducted from maternity leave allowance and EI payments. However, you may want to discuss your personal tax situation with an independent financial adviser.
Not Claiming or Choosing to Defer the Allowance
If you're not sure you will be returning to work after your leave, you may choose to defer or not apply for the maternity allowance. You may defer your decision to receive the maternity leave allowance only up until the expiration of the return to work repayment period. Let your supervisor know if you choose to defer the allowance.
If you take the allowance, then resign at the end of your maternity or parental leave, or do not fulfil the back-to-work requirements of your collective agreement or your terms and conditions of employment, you'll be required to repay benefit premiums and any allowances you have received.
See Return to Work (or Not) for further details on benefit repayment.