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Your maternity leave and maternity pay checklist

It might seem a while away, but once you’ve made your pregnancy announcement, it’s a good idea to begin maternity leave preparations and find out if you’re entitled to maternity pay. Here’s a maternity leave checklist to help.

2 mins
to read
By Danial Ahmad ,
Jan 27, 2021


  1. Tell your boss your big news. It may vary depending on where you live, but you normally need to let them know by week 25 at the latest.
  2. Find out if there’s anyone else you need to tell at work. In some companies there are HR reps who can help.
  3. Ask for a risk assessment in your workplace, things like your workstation and posture may be looked at, as well as exposure to any chemicals.
  4. Ask your healthcare provider (HCP) about when to get a maternity certificate. The timing and process may vary in different countries and with different HCPs.
  5. Ask your HCP how the maternity certificate works and who to show it to.
  6. Think about how long to take off before your little one arrives — you may be able to start your maternity leave before your child is born, depending on which country you’re in.
  7. Consider how long to take off after your little one arrives — there may be a minimum amount of time required, depending on where you live in the world and what you do as a job.
  8. Work out how much maternity leave is affordable based on maternity pay available.  
  9. Compare how much daycare will cost versus your salary.
  10. Consider when the best end date for work is. 
  11. Think about when the best return date to work is.
  12. Speak to colleagues who have been on maternity leave before for advice.
  13. Ask about any return to work bonuses that may be offered. 
  14. Consider paternity leave and shared leave, if it’s available where you live. 
  15. Check eligibility for shared leave. If it’s limited, how about dad settles the little one into daycare for two weeks so mom can ease back into work smoothly?
  16. Ask about keeping-in-touch days, or ‘KIT’ days, if your work offers them.
  17. Now you’ve got that admin out of the way, you can reward yourself with a fun task — children’s names?! See our checklist for ideas.
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