Maternity Protection Act 1994
General right to return to work on expiry of protective leave.
26.— (1) Subject to this Part, on the expiry of a period during which an employee was absent from work while on protective leave, the employee shall be entitled to return to work—
( a) F49 [ with the employer with whom she or he was working immediately before the start of that period or, where during the employee ’ s absence from work there was a change of ownership of the undertaking in which she or he was employed immediately before her or his absence ], with the owner (in this Act referred to as “ the successor”) of the undertaking at the expiry of the period of absence,
( b) in the job which the employee held immediately before the start of that period, and
( c) under the contract of employment under which the employee was employed immediately before the start of that period, or, where a change of ownership such as is referred to in paragraph (a) has occurred, under a contract of employment with the successor which is identical to the contract under which the employee was employed immediately before the start of that period, F50 [ and (in either case) under terms or conditions —
(i) not less favourable than those that would have been applicable to the employee, and
(ii) that incorporate any improvement to the terms or conditions of employment to which the employee would have been entitled,
if she or he had not been so absent from work. ]
(2) For the purposes of subsection (1) (b), where the job held by an employee immediately before the start of the period of F49 [ her or his absence on protective leave ] was not the employee’s normal or usual job, the employee shall be entitled to return to work, either in F49 [ her or his normal or usual job ] or in that job as soon as is practicable without contravention by the employee or the employer of any provision of a statute or instrument made under statute.
(3) In this section “ job”, in relation to an employee, means the nature of F49 [ the work which she or he is employed to do in accordance with her or his contract of employment and the capacity and place in which she or he is so employed ].