With effect from 31 October 2008, maternity leave that has to be given to an eligible female employee under the law has been extended from 12 to 16 weeks.
- The employee is entitled to absent herself from work for 4 weeks immediately before and 12 weeks immediately after delivery.The first 8 weeks has to be taken as a continuous block.The last 8 weeks (maximum 48 days) may be taken continuously immediately after the first 8 weeks or taken flexibly, with the employer’s consent, within 12 months from the child’s birth. Employers may also give maternity leave and benefits beyond the statutory minimum.
- The Employer is to pay her salary for all 16 weeks of maternity leave:
- for the first 2 confinements, the 9th to 16th week is funded by the Government, capped at S$20,000 (including CPF contributions) per confinement.
- for the third and subsequent confinements, the Government will fund the full 16 weeks, capped at S$40,000 (including CPF contributions) per confinement.
- You are also required to pay the maternity leave benefits if your employee is:
- dismissed without sufficient cause within the last 6 months of pregnancy; or
- retrenched within the last 3 months of pregnancy.
The Employment Act
If your employee does not meet the above criteria but is covered under the Employment Act, she is also legally entitled to 12 weeks of maternity leave for all births:
- You are required to pay her salary for the first 8 weeks of the first 2 confinements, if she has been in service for at least 90 days before the birth of her child.
Managerial, executive or confidential staff may not be covered under the Employment Act, depending on their scope of employment. Please contact the Ministry of Manpower for a consultation to ascertain whether your employee falls under the Employment Act and/or is entitled to such maternity benefits.
Entitlement of Self-Employed Mothers
Self-employed mothers are also eligible under the CDCA, if:
- the child is a Singapore Citizen;
- the self-employed mother is lawfully married to the child’s father at the time of the child’s conception or birth; and
- if the self-employed mother has been engaged in a particular business, trade, profession or vocation for a continuous period of at least 90 days before the birth of that child, and
- the self-employed mother has lost income as a result of not engaging in her trade, business, profession or vocation during the maternity leave period.
The self-employed mother will be granted up to 8 weeks (56 days) of Government-paid maternity leave (capped at S$20,000 per confinement) for the first 2 confinements.
For subsequent confinements, up to 16 weeks (112 days) of Government-paid maternity leave (capped at S$40,000 per confinement) will be granted.