Going on maternity or extended leave? Speak to Super SA
Applying for Leave Without Pay (LWOP) to extend your maternity leave or your annual leave can be a great option for SA public sector employees.
Before you do though, it’s best to talk to Super SA to ensure you are making the right decisions and that there are no surprises regarding super contributions and insurance when you return to work.
For Triple S members, once your income stops so do your employer contributions. For women, the long-term effect can be significant. Women are more likely to take longer periods of LWOP or work part time to care for children and elderly parents and as a result they often retire with significantly less super than men. Recent studies have indicated that more women than men are living in poverty when they retire due to these differences in long term work patterns.
Most Triple S members are covered with Income Protection Insurance, which provides cover if they are temporarily unable to work due to illness or injury. However, while a member is on LWOP they won’t be able to make a claim during this time, even if they continue to make contributions.
Triple S members with Death and Total and Permanent Disablement (TPD) Insurance will continue to be covered while they’re on LWOP, unless they choose to suspend their cover. If there’s not enough money in their employer account to cover the premiums while they are on LWOP, their cover will be cancelled. It’s also worth noting that if a member suspends their Death and TPD cover during this time, no insurance will be paid within the first year that they return from LWOP, unless their death and disablement is caused by an accident.
Lump Sum Scheme and Pension Scheme members can continue to make member contributions for up to 12 months while on LWOP. If they do this, their employer component continues to accrue and Death and TPD cover will continue.
Members should contact Super SA on 1300 369 315 before taking LWOP to find out how they may be affected and to discuss their options.