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Maternity leave information

Paternity leave

Employment

Employed new fathers are entitled to take two weeks paid paternity leave following the birth of their child (this is called ordinary paternity leave). They are also now entitled to take up to 26 weeks paid paternity leave which allows new fathers to share the care of their child (this is called additional paternity leave). The pay received during paternity leave is prescribed by statute however some employers offer more than the prescribed amount.

1. Who is entitled to Ordinary Paternity Leave?

Employees who:-

  • have or expect to have responsibility for the child’s upbringing
  • are the biological father of the child or the mother’s husband or partner (including same sex relationships); and
  • have worked continuously for their employer for 26 weeks ending with the 15th week before the baby is due.

Ordinary Paternity Leave is also available for employees adopting a child.

2. How long is Ordinary Paternity Leave?

Men can take either one week or two consecutive weeks paid paternity leave in the first eight weeks after the baby is born. It cannot be broken up into odd
days.

3. Who is entitled to Ordinary Paternity Pay?

Employees who are entitled to Ordinary Paternity Leave may be entitled to Ordinary Paternity Pay if their average weekly earnings are not less than the “lower earnings limit” (currently £109 per week) in the 8 weeks ending with the week immediately preceding the 14th week before the expected week of the child’s birth.

4. How much is Ordinary Paternity pay?

£136.78 a week or 90% of the employees average weekly earnings if that is less than £136.78 per week.

5. Rights when returning from Ordinary Paternity Leave

Employees have the right to return to the same job after Ordinary Paternity Leave.

6. Who is entitled to Additional Paternity Leave?

Employees who:-

  • have or expect to have responsibility for the child’s upbringing
  • are the biological father of the child or the mother’s husband or partner (including same sex relationships)
  • have worked continuously for their employer for 26 weeks ending with the 15th week before the baby is due.

Additional Paternity Leave is also available for employees adopting a child.

7. How long is Additional Paternity Leave?

Men have the right to take between two and 26 weeks leave to care for a child under one, if the mother has returned to work before taking her full 52 weeks’ maternity leave. This is in addition to the two weeks Ordinary Paternity Leave.

8. Who is entitled to Additional Paternity Pay?

Employees where the mother has not exhausted her entitlement to 39 weeks Statutory Maternity Pay provided the mother has at least two weeks of her entitlement left. This is in addition to
any pay received during Ordinary Paternity Leave.

9. How much is Additional Paternity pay?

£136.78 a week or 90% of the employees average weekly earnings if that is less than £136.78 per week.

10. Rights when returning from Additional Paternity Leave

Employees have the right to return to the same job after Additional Paternity Leave.

Our experienced employment solicitors advise both employers and employees. We provide specialised and pragmatic advice on all aspects of employment law. Please contact us for more information.


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