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Here's what you need to tell your employee about UIF benefits before she goes on maternity leave

by , 14 November 2014
While pregnancy provides joy to expecting mothers, it can also be stressful.

In fact, according to parents.com, sometimes being pregnant can feel as if it's a full-time job. And that's a problem if you've already got a full-time job - the kind that requires you to be at your desk or to be pleasant to clients.

That's why you need to be more supportive as an employer as your employee, Jane hammers out details of her maternity leave and deals with pregnancy-related issues.

After all, employees will care about your business when you care about them first, says inc.com.

Now back to Jane.

One way to support her is to help her with UIF benefits.

Here's what you need to tell her so she can make her claim successfully.

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Maternity leave 101: Here's what to tell Jane about UIF benefits

Tell Jane she must apply for maternity leave benefits at a labour centre at least eight weeks before the expected date of birth.
If she has valid reasons, the Unemployment Insurance Commissioner can accept an application after this period and he can extend the submission date up to six months after the date of birth.
Also tell her that since she's been contributing to the UIF, she has the right to claim from the Maternity Benefit Fund.
According to mywage.co.za, employees who've been contributing are eligible for a maternity benefit of up to a maximum amount of 60% of their remuneration depending on their level of income. Benefits are paid for a maximum duration of 17.32 weeks (121 days). In the case of a miscarriage in the third trimester or a stillborn child, the contributor is entitled to a maternity benefit for six weeks.

To claim UIF benefits, tell Jane to follow these three easy steps

Step#1: Collect information and complete forms
She must:
  • Produce her 13-digit identity document or passport;
  • Complete the UI-2.8 form;
  • Complete the UI-2.7 form;
  • Complete the UI-4 form;
  • Submit these documents to you, her employer, for signature; and
  • Produce a medical certificate confirming she'll be giving birth.
Step#2: Submit the documents
She must deliver the completed forms and copies of all necessary documents to her nearest labour centre.
Step#3: Follow instructions
She must follow any instructions or directives by the labour centre. For example, the labour centre could ask her to undergo further medical examinations.

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Over and above helping Jane with UIF benefits, remember that you need to protect her before and after the birth of her child

According to experts behind the Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service, you can't allow a pregnant employee, or an employee who's nursing her child, to perform work hazardous to her or the health of her child.
You must provide a suitable alternative position for a period of six months after the birth of her child if:
  • She performs night work (between 18h00 and 06h00), or
  • Her work poses a danger to her health or safety, or that of her child, and
  • If it's practical for you to do so.
Your employees are your greatest asset, make sure you support them.
If pregnant employees like Jane feel you care about them and their well-being, they'll be more than happy to return to work after maternity leave and continue to be productive. This way, everybody wins.
PS: For more information on maternity leave, check out Your Maternity Leave Solution.

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