Question: Maternity leave payments

Question:

I would like confirmation that employees who are on maternity leave are entitled to still receive the normal BCEA leave days accruing to them while they are on maternity leave.

Answer

Section 25 of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act, 1997 provides that an employee is entitled to at least 4 consecutive months’ maternity leave.  This leave is of the unpaid variety.  If proper regard is had to Section 20 of the Act regulating annual leave it becomes apparent that paid leave entitlements are linked and subject to the actual number of days an employee worked or was entitled to be paid.  It follows that unless an employee is on paid maternity leave, any maternity leave taken purely in accordance with the maternity leave provisions of the Act would not entitle such employee to accrue normal leave days while on maternity leave.

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