Maternity Allowance - How much Maternity Allowance will I get?

Maternity Allowance is a weekly payment for some women who are pregnant or have recently given birth.

Last reviewed 08 April 2024

How much Maternity Allowance will I get?

Employed or have recently stopped working

Maternity Allowance is £184.03 per week or 90% of your average gross weekly earnings (before tax), whichever is the smaller amount.  

Maternity Allowance is paid for 39 weeks. If you choose to share some of your parental leave through Statutory Shared Parental Leave, your Maternity Allowance may end before 39 weeks.


Maternity Allowance is between £27 to £184.03 per week if you’re self-employed.  

You will get a reduced rate if you have not paid enough national insurance contributions in the 66 weeks before your baby is due.  

To get £184.03 per week, you must: 

  • be registered with HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) for at least 26 weeks in the 66 weeks before your baby is due; and  
  • paid Class 2 National Insurance contributions for at least 13 of the 66 weeks before your baby is due.  

If you haven’t paid any Class 2 national insurance contributions or do unpaid work for your spouse’s or civil partner’s self-employment, you’ll get the lower rate of Maternity Allowance of £27 per week for 14 weeks.  

Benefit Cap

Maternity Allowance is included in the Benefit Cap which limits the total amount in some benefits that working-age people can receive. See our Benefit Cap information guide for more details.

How will I be paid Maternity Allowance?

Maternity Allowance will be paid directly into your bank or building society account or through the Payment Exception Service if you are unable to open or manage one of these or a similar account.

Maternity Allowance is usually paid every two or four weeks.

Maternity Allowance and other benefits

Maternity Allowance counts in full as income when calculating your entitlement to other but is ignored when calculating your entitlement to Working Tax Credit and Child Tax Credit

Maternity Allowance is deducted in full from Universal Credit. Because Maternity Allowance is paid four-weekly but Universal Credit is calculated monthly, it can look like more Maternity Allowance is being deducted from your Universal Credit than you actually received.  

If you get Maternity Allowance and Universal Credit at the same time, and you have children who were in childcare before you started getting Maternity Allowance, you can keep getting help with childcare costs for your older children while on maternity leave.  


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