GDPs in Scotland may be eligible for more maternity pay

Practitioners in Scotland may be eligible for more maternity payGeneral dental practitioners (GDPs) may qualify for higher maternity payments, following a decision by the Scottish government.

Authorities amended the maternity pay provision for practitioners in Scotland who have children in quick succession.

This decision, which took effect on March 1, comes following an intervention by the British Dental Association (BDA).

Additionally, around 30 practitioners who financially lost out over the past three years could qualify for retrospective maternity payments, according to the dentists’ trade union,

The payments could be up to £1,399 per week – although the amount awarded varies according to individual circumstances.

‘Goodwill’ gesture

The government announcement states that earlier maternity payments will count towards the test period earnings when calculating subsequent imbursements.

Consequently, GDPs who have children close together will be better off financially than they may have been previously.

Maternity pay for GDPs is discretionary. However, the Scottish government agreed – as a ‘goodwill’ gesture – that those impacted by the exclusion of previous maternity payments from the test period earnings in the last three years may receive retrospective pay.

Right choice

Following an amendment, the Statement of Dental Remuneration allows previous maternity payments which fall within the test period ‘to be included in the assessment of earning for the calculation of subsequent maternity payments’.

For consideration, dentists need to contact NHS Scotland practitioner services division.

Josephine Weir, member of the BDA’s Scottish dental practice committee, said: ‘The Scottish government has made the right choice to amend the maternity pay provision.

‘The BDA wanted no member with practically no earnings on a second maternity leave to be at a disadvantage. We hope any parent left in this position in recent years will make their claim.’