Paternity Leave – Information For First Time Fathers

As you will probably know, paternity leave is the time allowed off work to new fathers.  There are basic allowances provided by the government but many companies will have their own individual paternity policies. It is a good idea to dig out your staff hand book and find out exactly what your company will offer well in advance of your baby being born.
The Basic Allowance
A new a father is allowed up to two weeks off work and will be paid a statuary amount of approximately £125 per week. If he earns less than this then he can claim up to 90% of his normal weekly wage during his two weeks absence.
The two weeks can be taken anytime between the baby being born up until it is 2 months old. In order to entitled to paternity leave, at the 15th week before the baby is due the father must have been working for his firm for at least 26 weeks (just over 5 months). In order to be able to take paternity leave he will need to notify his employer of his intention by the 15th week before the baby is due.
Some fathers will not be entitled to paternity leave. Some of these reasons include if you are self-employed, if you haven’t given your employer the right amount of notice or if you leave you job before the baby is born.
Any father who takes paternity leave is protected from unfair treatment in the same way that a women on maternity leave is. If you feel that you have been treated unfairly, if you have been disciplined or have been put forward for redundancy because you are taking time off then you may be able to take legal action against your employer.
Additional Paternity Leave
Additional paternity leave can be claimed by new fathers whose partner has returned to work. Additional paternity Leave can entitle some fathers to up to 26 weeks off. You would need to check with your local authority whether or not you will be entitled to any pay during this period as it will depend on your individual circumstances.
What is Parental Leave?
Parents are allowed to take up to 13 weeks parental leave before their child’s 5th birthday in addition to their normal holiday allowance. Parental leave can be taken in order to look after your child or arrange for their care. This leave is unpaid.
These are just some of the basics of paternity leave, additional paternity leave and parental leave. One last thing….make sure you thoroughly enjoy your time off with your beautiful new baby!
Vicky is from Lorna Drew Nursing Bras. She loves to write parenting and family related articles.