Jersey politicians approve changes to parental benefits

Parents in Jersey will be able to claim benefits for their children for a longer period after changes to the law.

The Maternity Allowance will now be replaced with the Parental Allowance, and the Maternity Grant will be replaced with the Parental Grant.

The Parental Allowance which is worth up to £224.98 per week, can be claimed for up to 32 weeks rather than 18. The Parental Grant is now £674.94.

Both will be available to parents (including adoptive and surrogate parents) whose child is expected to be born or adopted on or after 1 January 2021.

The Government says parents will be able to choose how they divide the 32 weeks and can take the allowance over a two-year period. It also says mothers who are currently claiming Maternity Allowance will not be affected by the change.

The regulations were submitted to the States Assembly by the Minister for Social Security, with members backing it by 40-1 votes.

We recognise that families look very different in 2020 than they did in the mid-1970s, when we originally introduced the Maternity Allowance and Maternity Grant. “The introduction of parental benefits means that we can support more parents to have as much time as possible with their children during those crucial early years.

Deputy Judy Martin, Jersey's Social Security Minister