Posted by: Nicolene | 2004/11/23

When to stop working<br>


My babie's due date is 16 March 2005 ,(40weeks). I'm planning on working untill 25/02/05 (38 weeks).Is this pushing it a bit? I don't want to be home too long before the birth, I rather want to be off a bit longer after the birth!!!


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Our expert says:
Expert ImageGynaeDoc

As long as there are no complications, you can work till the day before labour.

Best wishes

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

Our users say:
Posted by: Purple | 2004/11/23

(a) at any time from four weeks before the expected date of birth, unless otherwise agreed; or

You can be requested to provide a letter from your doctor to work during this 4 week period because of risk to the company, however, it is considered discrimination on the basis of gender if you are forced to leave work during this time. You may start your maternity leave any time FROM 4 weeks before your due date.

Reply to Purple
Posted by: Jessica | 2004/11/23

Thought I paste the law here for your reference:

Maternity leave

[In terms of section 187(1)(e) of the Labour Relations Act, 1995, the dismissal of an employee on account of her pregnancy, intended pregnancy, or any reason related to her pregnancy, is automatically unfair. The definition of dismissal in section 186 of the Labour Relations Act, 1995, includes the refusal to allow an employee to resume work after she has taken maternity leave in terms of any law, collective agreement or her contract.]

(1) An employee is entitled to at least four consecutive months’ maternity leave.

(2) An employee may commence maternity leave—

(a) at any time from four weeks before the expected date of birth, unless otherwise agreed; or

(b) on a date from which a medical practitioner or a midwife certifies that it is necessary for the employee’s health or that of her unborn child.

(3) No employee may work for six weeks after the birth of her child, unless a medical practitioner or midwife certifies that she is fit to do so.

(4) An employee who has a miscarriage during the third trimester of pregnancy or bears a stillborn child is entitled to maternity leave for six weeks after the miscarriage or stillbirth, whether or not the employee had commenced maternity leave at the time of the miscarriage or stillbirth.

(5) An employee must notify an employer in writing, unless the employee is unable to do so, of the date on which the employee intends to—

(a) commence maternity leave; and

(b) return to work after maternity leave.

(6) Notification in terms of subsection (5) must be given—

(a) at least four weeks before the employee intends to commence maternity leave; or

(b) if it is not reasonably practicable to do so, as soon as is reasonably practicable.

(7) The payment of maternity benefits will be determined by the Minister subject to the provisions of the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1966 (Act No. 30 of 1966). [Sections 34 and 37 of the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1966 (Act No. 30 of 1996) provide for the payment of maternity leave. Legislative amendments will be proposed to Cabinet to improve these benefits and to provide that the payment to an employee of maternity benefits does not adversely affect her right to unemployment benefits.]

Reply to Jessica
Posted by: Jessica | 2004/11/23


I'm the one at my work place that has to keep up to scratch with the laws about maternity leave and all other aspects of work relations and so forth,

The law states that a pregnant lady may not work for 4 weeks before the expected date of birth and 6 weeks after the delivery. You are entitled to 4 months maternity leave. (Unpaid)

If you wish to work longer you must give your employer a medical certificate indicating that you may carry on working. My company does not allow woman to work longer if this medical letter is not given, likewise if the lady would like to return to work sooner than 6 weeks after delivery she must also issue a medical certificate (according to law)

This might seem a bit odd, but the company can get into trouble if they allow you to work without permission from your medical practitioner.

Hope it helps


Reply to Jessica
Posted by: Purple | 2004/11/23

I had planned to work till 38 weeks, and at 37 weeks my doctor confirmed that I was in perfect health to do so. at 37 weeks and 2 days I woke up and realised that there was no way I could get through any more work, so I heaved my whale like body off to work, finished up what I could, ensured that the people filling in for me knew what to do and went home at lunch time.

I agree with you though about having as much time with the baby as you possibly can. Resting before hand won't make you feel more rested when baby arrives - nothing can prepare you for the shock of those first 2 weeks (it does get better, I promise!!!).

I asked to be induced at 39 weeks because I couldn't move my enormous body around, except for the wild cleaning frenzy that I got into. Don't ask to be induced - just sit it out, being induced is awful and much more painful.

The BCEA allows for you to leave any time during the last 4 weeks of your pregnancy, so long as you negotiate it with your company.

I'll aim for leaving work at 38 weeks with my second baby.

Reply to Purple
Posted by: Norma | 2004/11/23


My boy came on 39weeks, still worked that Friday and he was born on Saturday. I was suppose to be on leave from the Monday (so I had one week before baby come). But didn't work that way. If I think about it now, I would have wanted to be home earlier, just to relax a bit, once baby is born it's really bussy....
So..... if I have more kids I will go of earlier.
I think you could take 3weeks before baby comes and just relax...


Reply to Norma

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