PREGNANT mums face a “disgusting” adult to 12-week wait for maternity stipend payments as a supervision struggles to understanding with a reserve of claims.
It’s left families though income to cover bills and lease and worrying about how to buy things for their new babies during a time when they should be happy and excited.
Katie Heard, 30, from Hampshire told The Sun that she’s wracked adult £1,000 on credit cards to compensate for food and bills after struggling to conduct on usually her husband’s income after she went on maternity leave from her pursuit as a barista.
“It’s been really difficult,” she said. “My father works though when one of we leave your pursuit it’s really formidable to conduct on one salary.
“You need a income for bills, automobile insurance, food – things that we routinely take for postulated – and afterwards it’s taken divided from you.
“I mislaid a tract this week as my baby is due on Monday. we was on a phone to a helpline for 12 hours in tears. How do they design people to usually manage? It’s disgusting.”
MATERNITY stipend is a remuneration from a Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to women who don’t validate for orthodox maternity pay.
This is typically since they’re self-employed or they haven’t built adult adequate desert to orthodox compensate by working.
You can possibly get:
- £148.68 a week or 90 per cent of your normal weekly gain (whichever is less) for 39 weeks
- £27 a week for 39 weeks
- £27 a week for 14 weeks.
How many we get depends on how many inhabitant word credits you’ve built adult by working.
Read a beam for some-more on how orthodox maternity compensate works.
Katie, who already has a three-year-old daughter and is now awaiting a boy, says she submitted her explain to a Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) on Jul 22 with a requested start date of Sep 1, as that’s when her maternity leave was due to start.
She couldn’t explain during 26 weeks, that is when claims open, as she had initial practical to her employer for orthodox maternity compensate usually to have to wait a few weeks for her ask to be incited down.
But 7 weeks on, and with her baby due to be innate on Monday Oct 14, Katie says she’s been told her box won’t be looked into until Oct 16.
She’s usually beholden to have been means to spin to puncture assets and been means to use credit cards in a meantime. She’s also this week been given a £300 puncture allege from a supervision to assistance her get by.
When can we explain maternity allowance?
You can explain maternity stipend as shortly as you’ve been profound for 26 weeks and payments can start 11 weeks before your baby is due.
A Freedom of Information (FOI) ask by debt attorney John Charcol progressing this year suggested there were 127,400 successful maternity stipend claims filed by self-employed mums between Jan 1, 2013 and Dec 1, 2017 – nonetheless it’s suspicion 3 in 10 are still blank out.
But while a DWP says it typically take adult to 8 weeks to routine payments, it admits it’s now holding adult to 12 weeks – and some mums contend it’s holding even longer.
Sarah Dee’s initial baby is due in Dec after 3 year’s of perplexing to get profound with her fiancee, 36.
The 35-year-old from Newcastle works as a executive in a financial industry, that means she’s not entitled to orthodox maternity pay.
But notwithstanding submitting her maternity stipend explain on Sep 16 – 3 and a half weeks ago – she has no thought when her focus will be processed.
She says she’s perceived churned messages with an programmed content on Sep 26 observant there was an 8 week wait, an programmed phone line advising of a 14-week wait, and an confidant observant there was a 12-week wait.
Sarah says she’s intensely disturbed about a check as she’s formulation on holding maternity leave earlier than designed due to ill health from a pregnancy.
THE initial thing to do if you’re struggling while we wait for maternity stipend is to call a Department for Work and Pensions.
The maternity stipend helpline can be reached on 0800 169 0283.
The Department for Work and Pensions has reliable that it will fast-track puncture allege payments where required nonetheless we’re watchful on acknowledgment on what resources this will be paid in.
If we don’t validate for a allege on your maternity allowance, those on certain advantages might validate for a budgeting loan from a supervision or a Universal Credit allege – nonetheless these both have to be repaid.
Alternatively, we might wish to cruise holding out an interest-free credit label to compensate for things in a meantime, though usually do this if you’re certain we can accommodate a smallest repayments any month.
Also use an elgibility checking tool, such as this one on MoneySavingExpert.com, to safeguard we know how expected we are to validate for a label though deleterious your credit score.
When we do finally get your allowance, it will be backdated to a date that people are authorised from and paid in one lump-sum.
She told The Sun: “My partner is now putting in 12- to 14-hour shifts to try and get us adequate to live on and to get by Christmas.
“I have been off work for 3 weeks with serious pain though need to go behind subsequent week to try and get some income together.
“This is a initial Christmas with a new baby and have no thought how we will means it. we have never felt so stressed and frightened during a time we should be focusing on my baby entrance and celebrating that time.”
And sadly Sarah isn’t alone, one silent called Lynsey tweeted: “I became #freelance after my daughter was innate since it was a best approach to financially support my family.
“Now being punished for this preference while watchful for my second child, and will have 0 income for 14 weeks. #MaternityAllowance is a joke.”
Another wrote: “Find it annoying that @HMRCgovuk is tweeting about financial support and recommendation for people while loads of mums are being left struggling since there is a 12 WEEK wait for maternity stipend applications. Absolute disgrace.”
Someone else called Leyla added: “My baby is 4 weeks aged tomorrow and I’m still watchful for my #maternityallowance! #backlog”
Another wrote: “@DWP is a many amateurish department! Processing maternity stipend claims are holding 12 weeks not 8 and we can’t send off a explain until 11 weeks before how does that work?
“How am we ostensible to compensate lease during a finish of a month? Backdating doesn’t assistance that does it?”
Rosalind Bragg, executive of gift Maternity Action says it’s had a spike in calls from disturbed mums who’ve been told there’s a 12-week wait for cash.
She told The Sun: “We lifted a emanate of these delays with DWP routine officials several weeks ago, though have not perceived any concrete response to date.
“Given a purpose of maternity entitlements such as maternity allowance, it is simply unsuitable that profound women who validate are experiencing such enlarged check in a estimate of their claim, and that some women are giving birth and starting maternity leave though any financial support in place.
“We have therefore created to a Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Thérèse Coffey MP, seeking her to take obligatory calming movement to move preference times down to a aim of usually underneath 5 weeks.”
DWP says when we do finally get your allowance, it will be backdated to a date that people are authorised from and paid in one lump-sum.
It adds that people can ring a helpline on 0800 169 0283 to ask fast-track puncture payments in a meantime – these will be advances of any maternity stipend you’re due to get.
The dialect blames a check on under-staffing.
A orator added: “We know how critical this financial support is for new relatives and are contemptible for a delays some are now experiencing.
“We are putting some-more staff in place to speed adult a routine and are quick tracking puncture cases.
“You can request 14 weeks before a week in that your baby is born, so we titillate people to request as shortly as they are eligible.”
Here’s all we need to know about maternity allowance.
And it’s critical we explain after investigate found that three in 10 mums might be blank out.
Plus, here’s what we need to know about orthodox maternity pay.
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