To qualify for maternity pay, 1 of the following must be true for you on the day before your paid maternity leave starts:
- You are self-employed.
- You are a private carer (‘alfahulp’) or are providing home help for less than 4 days a week.
- You are an artist.
- You are a director/majority shareholder (‘directeur-grootaandeelhouder’).
- You are a childminder (‘gastouder’).
- You are a general physician (‘huisarts’).
- You are an employee or joint shareholder who owns at least 5% of a company’s voting rights and shares (‘met aanmerkelijk belang in een bedrijf’).
- You are helping out in your spouse or civil partner’s business (‘meewerkend partner’).
You will be entitled to paid maternity leave for at least 16 weeks. Keep in mind that 4 to 6 weeks of this leave must be taken in one go right before your expected due date. After giving birth, you will be entitled to a minimum of 10 weeks’ paid leave.
Please note: If you are going to have a multiple birth, you will be entitled to at least 20 weeks’ maternity leave. You must take 8 to 10 weeks of this leave in one go right before your expected due date.
If your baby arrives early, you can add any unused maternity leave from before the birth to your leave after the birth. If your baby comes late, you will still be entitled to a minimum of 10 weeks’ leave after giving birth.
You will also be entitled to more than 10 weeks’ leave if your newborn has to be hospitalised for more than 7 days after the birth.
Your maternity pay will not be more than the gross national minimum wage (‘wettelijk minimum loon’). To qualify for this amount, you must have worked at least 1225 hours in the year leading up to your maternity leave.
If you worked fewer hours, your maternity pay will be based on your income from the previous years (going back 5 years at most). Should you only recently have become self-employed, your maternity pay will be calculated on the basis of what you have earned so far since starting your business.
You will receive your maternity pay on a weekly basis.
If you are self-employed but also work for an employer, you will likely be entitled to 2 types of maternity pay. You will receive maternity pay for the hours you spent running your own business. But, you will also be entitled to maternity pay from your job as an employee. Your employer will apply for this other type of pay on your behalf.
As you are self-employed, you are free to choose when you want to stop working before giving birth and when you want to start again afterwards. If you start working before your paid maternity leave ends, your maternity pay will continue as usual. Any income you are earning from running your business will not be deducted from your maternity pay.
If you become ill while on maternity leave, your maternity pay will continue as usual.
Should you give birth prematurely or experience a stillbirth after the 24th week of pregnancy but before your maternity leave starts, you will be entitled to paid maternity leave for 16 weeks.
If you experience a stillbirth but are still pregnant because you are having a multiple pregnancy, you will continue to be entitled to paid maternity leave for 8 to 10 weeks before your due date.
- You must ensure the information you give us is accurate (for example, your contact details, your living situation).
- You must inform us of a change in your circumstances within 1 week of that change occurring (for example, if your contact details change, your living situation changes or you move abroad).
- You must let us know if you give birth before your maternity leave starts.
- You must let us know if you would like to change the start date of your maternity leave and/or pay.
- You must respond to our letters and messages on time.