herald

Monday 11 December 2017

Just ten weeks maternity leave for RTE star Jennifer - 'Mortgages and bills have to be paid'

Jennifer Maguire
Jennifer Maguire
Jennifer Maguire and Darren Kennedy
Jennifer Maguire
Jennifer Maguire and husband Lau

RTE star Jen Maguire will only take ten weeks off from her TV and radio work after her first baby is born.

The mum-to-be admitted she would like more time off but, without paid leave, it isn't feasible.

"Other mums can take six months or a whole year off but that's just not possible for me," she said. "I'd love to take more time off but I can't because I'm self-employed."

The 34-year-old works in both RTE radio and TV but is an independent contractor which means she isn't entitled to maternity pay.

"I'd love the time to spend with the baby but, not getting any maternity benefits, it's just not an option because mortgages and bills have to be paid. That's just the way it is," she said.

"I've never known any different because I've been self-employed since I was 19."

Bubbly Jen will continue to work almost until her baby arrives but she is upbeat about her shorter than average time off.

"It's [self-employment] a way of life. I've only ever had two weeks holiday off at any time. So even ten weeks off seems a huge amount of time," she added.

Jen wed her half-Italian beau Lau Zamparelli last summer in an intimate ceremony in Castle Leslie.

romantic

The loved-up couple then discovered their baby news on the first day of their romantic honeymoon in the Seychelles.

Jen confessed that she had no idea that she was pregnant when the pair said 'I do'.

As they look forward to their new arrival, it seems the pair have the details worked out already.

"At least I won't have to leave the baby in a creche. Because Lau and I are self-employed, Lau can look after the baby at home."

Jen is planning a natural birth but she said that she isn't nervous about the prospect.

"Everything will help, but keeping positive and not being stressed or scared I think will be key for me."

The former Apprentice star also revealed that her boss in 2fm, Dan Healy, was hugely supportive when she announced her baby news.

"He was more excited about the baby than even my own dad," she joked.

hnews@herald.ie

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