Employees being paid SMP are able to attend work for up to a maximum of ten days during their maternity leave, this includes adoption or additional paternity leave. There is no obligation on the employee to attend KIT days nor is there any obligation on the employer to offer them.
However, keeping in touch days can be a chance for you, the employer, to keep your employee up to date with any developments in the business. This can also help ease the employees return to work and ensure they feel that they are still a valued member of your team.
It can also assist the parent from a practical point of view, allowing them to “test” their childcare and acclimatise back into work mode. This can ensure your employee is ready for their back to work routine.
It should not be underestimated how difficult a time this can be for your employee and it is in your best interests to make their return to work as smooth a transition as possible. This may include discussing a phased return to work or short term flexible working.
Communication will be key during their maternity period, however remember that even 1 hour of work contact will be counted as 1 full KIT day so planning should be done well in advance.
If your employee works more than 10 days they will lose a week of SMP, this can be a significant amount for employees during this period so ensure you communicate, plan and discuss the best way of utilising these days before they go off on maternity leave.
As an employer it is up to you to consider whether you want to make any further compensatory payments for work done during the employee’s KIT days.
If you require further training or information on KIT days or any aspect of statutory leave please contact us at Simple HR, we will be happy to help.