Pregnancy App Article: "Shared Parental Leave"

Week 25
Shared Parental Leave
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Division of labour
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The new Shared Parental Leave law means you and your partner are entitled to split time off from work to care for your baby during the first year.

After the initial two weeks of statutory maternity leave and allowance for the mother, and paid paternity leave for the father, parents can share up to 50 weeks of leave and 37 weeks of pay between them.

You can choose to take time off simultaneously, if you wish, or split the time between you in any proportion. Once you've decided how to divide the leave, you'll need to agree it with your respective employers in advance.

Who's eligible?
To qualify for Shared Parental Leave, parents must have worked for the same employer for 26 weeks by the beginning of the 15th week before the baby's due date. 

Both parents must remain employed up until and including the first week that Shared Parental Leave is to be taken.

Shared Parental Pay
Statutory Shared Parental Pay will be paid at £139.58 per week - or 90% of your average weekly earnings, whichever is lower. This can be claimed instead of maternity pay if the mother doesn't use her full entitlement.

If parents qualify for Shared Parental Leave, they will also be entitled to Shared Parental Pay so long as they've earned an average salary, which meets the lower earnings limit of £111, for eight weeks prior to the 15th week before the expected due date.

Informing your employer
At least eight weeks before you plan to take Shared Parental Leave, you must give your employer a notice of entitlement to take it. This letter must say:
  • How much leave is available
  • How much leave you are entitled to take
  • How much leave you are intending to take
  • How you expect to take it
Each eligible parent can give their employer up to three separate notices booking or varying leave, either for a continuous block of leave, or several shorter periods. An employer is obliged to agree to the former, but may refuse the latter and request that leave be taken as one block - so it's arguably better, if you're able, to have an informal discussion to come to an agreement before this stage.
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Financially it's tons better for us, but more importantly it will give us that time together as a family to fully bond and get used to our new life.
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