Maternity Leave Allowance for B.C. Government Employees
Maternity leave allowance supplements the amount you receive from employment insurance (EI) during 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 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, you can receive 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 according to your base position. If the position’s wage goes up during your leave, the allowance will increase. 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 based on the salary stated in your temporary appointment letter. If your temporary appointment is scheduled to end during your leave, your allowance is recalculated using the basic pay amount for your base position for the rest 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 return to work after your leave, you may choose to defer or not apply for the maternity allowance. You may defer your decision only up to the end of the return to work repayment period. Let your supervisor know if you choose to defer.
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.