The Employment Act
If you do not qualify for maternity leave under the CDCA, you are still entitled to maternity benefits under the Employment Act. These benefits are more limited as compared to the CDCA. You are entitled to 12 weeks of maternity leave. However, it is only compulsory for your employer to pay you for the first eight weeks. In addition, these benefits are valid only up to the third child.
- Single moms and mothers of non-Singaporean children
Single and unmarried mothers are entitled to 12 weeks of maternity leave under the Employment Act. Mothers who were married but are divorced or widowed during the pregnancy do not count in this category and are entitled to the full CDCA benefits. Mothers of a non-Singaporean child are also entitled to the same benefits.
- Fulfilling the CDCA requirements within a year
If you don’t qualify for the CDCA benefits when you’re baby is born, but you meet the criteria within 12 months, you’re in luck. Women who fall under this category are still eligible to receive the outstanding benefits e.g., full 16 weeks of paid maternity.
- Moms of twins
Even if you give birth to twins, you’ll only be entitled to the same benefits as someone who had one child. The rationale is that two babies share one confinement period, and moms should only be compensated for loss of one income.
While nothing can make up for the devastation a stillbirth causes, you can be comforted by knowing you’re entitled to full maternity leave in Singapore and can use the time off to heal and nourish your body.
Flexible maternity leave
While it is compulsory to take the first four weeks off immediately after delivery, how you choose to take the rest of the maternity leave can be decided between you and your employer. You may prefer to break them into short periods of time, or you can discuss going into work part-time. Just note, however, that there is a cap of 48 working days for maternity leave that is taken in this way.
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