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The Social Security (Maternity Allowance) (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2014

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Citation, commencement and interpretation

1.—(1) These Regulations may be cited as the Social Security (Maternity Allowance) (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2014 and shall come into operation on 18th May 2014.

(2) The Interpretation Act (Northern Ireland) 1954(1) shall apply to these Regulations as it applies to an Act of the Assembly.

Amendment of the Social Security (Maternity Allowance) Regulations

2.—(1) The Social Security (Maternity Allowance) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1987(2) are amended in accordance with paragraphs (2) to (4).

(2) After regulation 1(2) (interpretation) insert—

“the 1992 Act” means the Social Security Contributions and Benefits (Northern Ireland) Act 1992..

(3) For regulation 2(3) (disqualification for the receipt of a maternity allowance) substitute—

Disqualification for the receipt of a maternity allowance

2.(1) A woman shall be disqualified for receiving a maternity allowance under section 35 of the 1992 Act if during the maternity allowance period she does any work in employment as an employed or self-employed earner, for more than 10 days, whether consecutive or not, falling within that period.

(2) The disqualification referred to in paragraph (1) shall be for such part of the maternity allowance period as may, in the opinion of the Department, be reasonable in the circumstances, provided that the disqualification shall, in any event, be for at least the number of days on which she so worked in excess of 10 days.

(3) A woman shall be disqualified for receiving a maternity allowance under section 35B of the 1992 Act if during the maternity allowance period—

(a)she works with S (as defined in subsection (1)(b) of that section); or

(b)she does any work in employment as an employed or self-employed earner.

(4) The disqualification referred to in paragraph (3) shall be for such part of the maternity allowance period as may, in the opinion of the Department, be reasonable in the circumstances and in any event shall be for at least the number of days she so worked.

(5) A woman shall be disqualified for receiving a maternity allowance under section 35 or 35B of the 1992 Act if during the maternity allowance period she fails without good cause to take due care of her health or to answer reasonable enquiries (not being enquiries relating to medical examination, treatment or advice) by the Department or its officers directed to ascertaining whether she is doing so.

(6) The disqualification referred to in paragraph (5) shall be for such part of the maternity allowance period as may, in the opinion of the Department, be reasonable in the circumstances.

(7) A woman shall be disqualified for receiving a maternity allowance under section 35 or 35B of the 1992 Act if at any time before she is confined she fails without good cause to attend for or to submit herself to any medical examination for which she was given at least 3 days notice in writing by or on behalf of the Department.

(8) The disqualification referred to in paragraph (7) shall be for such part of the maternity allowance period (being a part beginning not earlier than the day on which the failure occurs) as may, in the opinion of the Department, be reasonable in the circumstances, except that in the event of her being confined after such failure the woman shall not by reason of such failure be so disqualified for the day on which the confinement occurs or any day thereafter..

(4) In regulation 3 (modification of the maternity allowance period)—

(a)in paragraph (1)(4), for “the following provisions of this regulation” substitute “paragraph (2A)”; and

(b)after paragraph (2A)(5) add—

(2B) The provisions of section 35B of the 1992 Act which relate to the maternity allowance period shall, in relation to a woman who—

(a)is not entitled to maternity allowance at the 11th week before the expected week of confinement;

(b)subsequently becomes entitled to maternity allowance before being confined; and

(c)has ceased to work with S,

be modified in accordance with paragraph (2C).

(2C) The maternity allowance period shall be a period of 14 weeks commencing—

(a)on the day after she ceases work, or, if later, the day she becomes entitled to maternity allowance; and

(b)no later than the day following the day on which she is confined..

Amendment of the Child Support (Maintenance Assessments and Special Cases) Regulations, the Child Support (Maintenance Calculations and Special Cases) Regulations and the Child Support Maintenance Calculation Regulations

3.—(1) In paragraph (a)(iv) of Schedule 4 (the payments and awards specified for the purposes of regulation 26(1)(b)(i)) to the Child Support (Maintenance Assessments and Special Cases) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1992(6) after “section 35” insert or “35B”.

(2) In regulation 4(1)(a)(vii) of the Child Support (Maintenance Calculations and Special Cases) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2001(7) (flat rate) after “section 35” insert or “35B”.

Amendment of the Employment and Support Allowance Regulations

4.—(1) The Employment and Support Allowance Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2008(8) are amended in accordance with paragraphs (2) and (3).

(2) In regulation 2(1) (interpretation) omit the definition of “the maternity allowance period”.

(3) In regulation 20(1)(e)(9) (certain claimants to be treated as having limited capability for work)—

(a)in head (i) omit “section 35(2) of”; and

(b)in head (ii) after “section 35(1)” insert “or 35B(1)”.

Revocations

5.  Regulation 2(a) of the Social Security (Miscellaneous Amendments No. 2) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1997(10) and regulation 4(2) of the Statutory Maternity Pay, Social Security (Maternity Allowance) and Social Security (Overlapping Benefits) (Amendment) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006(11) are revoked.

Sealed with the Official Seal of the Department for Social Development on 16th May 2014

(L.S.)

Andrew Hamilton

A senior officer of the Department for Social Development

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