Paternity Leave Advice
Paternity leave is a legal entitlement
When a baby is born, it goes without saying that the mother will have a spell of maternity leave. But what people often forget is that the father too, is allowed to take paternity leave.
Paternity leave is a legal entitlement and will be available to anyone whose partner is having a baby or adopting, just so long as he:
- Is an employee;
- Has worked in the same employment for 26 weeks up to the 15th week before the expected due date;
- Gives the correct notice, which means telling an employer at least 15 weeks before the expected due date.
As long as a father fulfills these criteria, he is eligible to one or two weeks of paternity leave. This leave must be taken in one go and will usually start from the date the baby is born, although this does not have to be the case. However, his leave must end within 56 days of the birth. It is possible to get an additional 26 weeks paternity leave, but only if the mother returns to work.
While on paternity leave, a father is still entitled to be paid, although it will not be their full wage. It will either be 90% of their average weekly earnings, or statutory Ordinary Paternity Pay, which currently stands at £136.78 per week.
The rules differ slightly with regards to adoption, as the start and end dates of paternity leave will be determined by factors other than the birth date of the child. Usually it will begin from the date of placement.
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