Maternity Benefit

Maternity benefit, before and after childbirth, can be received by expectant mother who

  • is employed and receives a salary,
  • is self-employed and in fact makes social insurance contributions,
  • is spouse of a self-employed person and has voluntarily joined the social insurance,

if she is absent from work during pregnancy and maternity leave and thereby loses income from paid employment, or loses income as a self-employed person.

If an employment relationship is terminated due to winding-up of the workplace, the maternity benefit shall be granted, if the maternity leave has started not later than within 210 days after the termination of the employment relationship.

From 1 January 2020

Women who have lost the status of employee or self-employed person no more than 60 days before maternity leave are also entitled to maternity benefit.

Example

Sick-leave certificate B has been issued to Anna and the first day of maternity leave is 02.01.2010. Anna had concluded an employment agreement for a certain time period, and the employment relations ended on 30.11.2019. Anna has rights to maternity benefit because the status of employee was lost less than 60 days before the maternity leave.

From 1 September 2020

Persons, for which compulsory contributions for maternity insurance have been made or had to be made in the Republic of Latvia:

  • for at least 3 months in the period of the last 6 months before the month when the insurance event has occurred (the first day of maternity leave), or
  • for at least 6 months in the last 24 months

are also entitled to maternity benefit.

For insurance events occurring on 01.09.2020 or later, when determining rights to maternity benefit, conformity to the qualification period conditions shall be ascertained primarily, i.e., it shall be determined whether compulsory contributions for the specified time period have been made for the person.

 

Example

The first day of Anna’s maternity leave is 02.09.2020. Anna only recently started working. She had worked 2 months and employment relations ended on 01.08.2020. Therefore, in this case, Anna would have rights to maternity benefit because the status of employee was lost within 60 days before the maternity leave. However, she does not have the qualification period required for granting maternity benefit, which is why Anna will not have rights to receive maternity benefit.

Who else is entitled to receive this benefit?

During the postnatal period, maternity benefit can also be obtained by the child’s father or another person who takes care of the newborn at home, but no later than until the child’s 70th day of life. This applies to cases where:

  • The child’s mother is unable to take care of the baby until the 42nd postnatal day due to sickness;
  • The child’s mother has refused to take care of the child;
  • The child’s mother has died during childbirth or before the 42nd postnatal day;
  • The child is a foundling

Application for the benefit

Only an application for the benefit should be submitted.

The most convenient way is to fulfil an e-application on the portal of unified national and local services www.latvija.lv.

The application addressed to the division of the State Social Insurance Agency (SSIA) in a standard form or free form can be submitted also:

  • in person;
  • by mail;
  • electronically by signing the application with a safe electronic signature containing a time stamp;
  • to the national and local united client service centres that have concluded a contract with the SSIA.

With his/her signature the applicant certifies that the information provided in the application is true.

If documents attesting the disablement that have been issued abroad are submitted, they have to be processed according to validation rules. If the document has been issued in a foreign language, a translation of the document may be necessary.

The benefit’s  payment duration

The benefit will be paid in two parts – before and after childbirth.

The first part is paid for 56 or 70 days of the maternity leave. The benefit for 70 calendar days is paid to expectant mothers who are undergoing medical supervision from their 12th week of pregnancy.

The second part – for 56 or 70 calendar days – is paid after childbirth. The benefit for 70 days can be obtained, if:

  • The mother has had health problems during her pregnancy, childbirth or postpartum period;
  • Two or more babies are born.

The maximum period for which the maternity benefit can be obtained is 140 days.

In the event of a preterm birth, i.e. a birth before the start of the maternity leave, the maternity benefit shall be granted on the same terms, not less than for 112 calendar days.

The rates of the benefits

The benefit shall be granted in the amount of 80% of the average insurance contributions salary of the applicant.

The average insurance contributions salary of an employee is calculated for a period of 12 calendar months ending two months before the month in which the pregnancy leave began.

For self-employed women, the average insurance contributions salary shall be calculated in accordance with the average contributions made during the period of the last 12 months ending one quarter (3 months) before the quarter in which the pregnancy leave began.

Time for claiming

The benefit must be requested within 6 months from the first day of the maternity leave.

Time for decision

The decision on granting the benefit will be taken within 10 business days after the VSAA office has received all documents that are necessary for granting the benefit.

Receipt of the benefit

The benefit shall be transferred to your specified account in a credit institution of the Republic of Latvia or the postal payment system (PNS).

Published date: [20.01.2020]