Maternity leave pushing new mums into debt - including an average £1,770 in student loan interest - figures show

·1-min read

New mums are being pushed into debt after having a baby - including racking up an extra £1,770 in student loan interest on average - figures show.

In addition to facing reduced income and the increased costs of a newborn, nearly a quarter of women are going on maternity leave without any savings.

A study of new and expecting parents by finance company Credit Karma found that 26% of women go into debt to cover maternity leave - averaging £2,800 in borrowing.

That's a £560 increase from 2018, the company says.

The new research comes as the cost of living crisis in the UK continues, with rising fuel and food prices hitting the public hard.

Read more: More than half of UK households cutting back on gas and electricity use

Akansha Nath, head of partnerships at Credit Karma UK said: "Women are often disadvantaged financially throughout their life, and the responsibility to give birth plays a huge role in this gender disparity.

"At a time when the cost of living is affecting most people, and every penny counts, it's more important than ever that women take advantage of any support available to them."

Women with student loans face severe interest charges on their loans whilst on leave and unable to work, accruing an average of £1,770 loan interest in just six months of leave, the company says.

Maternity leave can also impact their credit score, setting them back an average £17,000 in interest over the course of their lifetime.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting