Employers are required to pay the additional four weeks’ maternity leave pay (i.e. 11th to 14th weeks) but may apply for reimbursement under the Reimbursement of Maternity Leave Pay Scheme which is overseen by the Labour Department and operated by a processing agent.
Eligibility under the Reimbursement of Maternity Leave Pay Scheme
The following requirements should be met for an application for reimbursement:
- the employee pertinent to the application employed by the employer (“applicant”) is covered by the Employment Ordinance;
- the employee is entitled to maternity leave and maternity leave pay under the Employment Ordinance;
- the employee has taken her maternity leave and the applicant has actually paid 14 weeks’ maternity pay leave to the employee;
- the employee’s confinement occurs on or after 11 December 2020; and
- the additional four weeks’ maternity leave pay that has been paid to the employee has not been and will not be covered or subsidised by other government funding.
The following documents must be submitted along with a completed Employer Application Form:
- a completed Employee Declaration Form – it is advisable to arrange this prior to commencement of maternity leave to avoid possible delay in processing the application;
- proof of payment of the maternity leave pay for 14 weeks (such as salary slips, bank transaction records);
- proof of applicant's bank account for receiving the maternity leave reimbursement (such as a monthly bank statement);
- registration or identity document relating to the applicant (such as business registration certificate); and
- proof of pregnancy provided by the relevant employee to the applicant (such as a medical certificate specifying the expected date of confinement).
Deadline for making an application
The applicant should submit its application by the later of the following:
- three months after the last day of the employee’s 14 weeks’ statutory maternity leave under the Employment Ordinance; and
- three months after the commencement date (1 April 2021) of the Reimbursement of Maternity Leave Pay Scheme (i.e. 1 July 2021).
As 1 July 2021 has already lapsed, any application must be made within the period set out in paragraph (a) above.