Paternity Leave and Pay: Know your rights

Statutory Paternity Leave is a maximum of two weeks’ leave, following the birth of a child, taken in order to support the mother or care for the new child.  It can be taken as a single week or two consecutive weeks.

It cannot be taken as odd days or as two separate weeks.  Statutory Paternity Leave must be taken within 56 days of the birth.  If the baby is born earlier than expected, it must be taken within 56 days from the date the baby was due.  To qualify you must have worked for the Company for at least 26 weeks by the end of the 15th week before the expected birth week.

Statutory Paternity Pay is paid at a fixed rate per week (determined in legislation) or 90% of average earnings if that is less.  It is paid less tax and National Insurance contributions in the normal way.

During Statutory Paternity Leave, you are entitled to all of your normal contractual terms and conditions as if you were not absent, apart from basic wages and salary.  You have the right to return to exactly the same job, on the same terms and conditions after Statutory Paternity Leave.  Paternity leave and pay are also available for the adoption of a child.

From 3rd April 2011, you may qualify for Additional Paternity Leave and Pay if either:

  • you are the father of a child due on or after 3 April 2011
  • your wife, partner or civil partner is pregnant and due to give birth to a child on or after 3 April 2011
  • you and your partner receive notification that you are matched with a child for adoption on or after 3 April 2011
  • your spouse, civil partner or partner (including same-sex relationships) is adopting a child from overseas and the child enters Great Britain on or after 3 April 2011

Additional Paternity Leave is for a maximum of 26 weeks. If your partner has returned to work, the leave can be taken between 20 weeks and one year after your child is born or placed for adoption. You may be entitled to receive Additional Statutory Paternity Pay during your partner's Statutory Maternity Pay, Maternity Allowance or Adoption Pay period.

Additional Statutory Paternity Pay is paid if you either:

  • Take Additional Paternity Leave
  • Are not working for the purposes of caring for your child, during your partner's Statutory Maternity Pay, Maternity Allowance or Statutory Adoption Pay period

For more information contact us…

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