The imputed contributions are “fictional” contributions that are credited without any charge to either worker or employer and are instead charged to the pension scheme to which the individual belongs. They are used both for accruing pension entitlement and for calculating the amount of the pension.
The Consolidating Act of the legislative provisions on the protection and support of maternity and paternity, approved with Italian Legislative Decree no. 151 of 26 March 2001, recognises, in favour of the working mother, the working father or both together, periods of optional abstention from work (parental leave) in addition to the period of compulsory abstention from work (maternity leave).
Parental leave is intended to allow the parent to be present next to their child in the first years of their life in order to satisfy their emotional and relational needs.
For workers registered with the INPS’ Civil Servants’ Pension Scheme the imputed contribution arrangement intervenes when said periods of optional abstention from work are paid in a reduced manner or are unpaid.
The imputed contributions are recognised for workers registered with the INPS’ Civil Servants’ Pension Scheme in the event of periods of optional abstention from work (parental leave).
When the worker is absent from work for optional abstention for maternity leave during the working period, the imputed contributions are recognised in absence of pay. With a reduced wage, however, the imputed credit is only provided for the differential share.
In particular, for the crediting of imputed contribution during parental leave (Article 32 of Legislative Decree no. 151 of 26 March 2001), the total duration of leave, due for both mother and father, must not exceed ten months (which can be raised to 11 months if the father makes use of this leave for a continuous period of at least three months), and is to be used within the first 12 years of the child’s life.
The law provides for a prolonged parental leave for a maximum period of three years for the mother or father of severely-disabled minors until the completion of the twelfth year of the child’s life, on the condition that the child is not admitted to a health care facility full-time unless, in this case, the parent’s presence is required by the health care providers.
With regard to payment and social security benefits, parental leave:
- should be taken into account in the length of service with the exception of the effects relating to annual leave and the thirteenth month’s payment;
- should be paid at a rate equal to 30% of the payment up until the child’s sixth year of age, and for a total maximum period of five months split between both parents, following the first 30 days which are paid in full;
- for the following four/five months, from the completion of the child’s sixth year of age, and up until the eighth year, a compensation equal to 30% is due exclusively in the event in which the parent’s income is less than 2.5 times the amount of the minimum pension;
- from the completion of the child’s sixth year of age, and up until the twelfth year, leave is due, but not paid (with the exception of what is said in the previous point, between six and eight years);
- in the event of extended leave for assistance to severely disabled minors, a subsidy of 30% of salary is due for the whole duration of three years.
In all the aforementioned cases of reduced or missing payment, the cover of the imputed contribution credit is applied, which is to be charged to the pension scheme with which the individual is registered.
What has been described is the regulation of the crediting of imputed contribution for periods of parental leave occurring within the employment relationship. Periods of optional abstention outside the employment relationship may, however, be redeemed.