Shared Parental Leave

Fathers are taking an increasingly active role in the care of their infants and government policies are changing to reflect this. Flexible Shared Parental Leave will came into effect in April 2015 as part of the Children and Families Bill.

What these changes mean

Expectant parents are able to share between them the allowed 52 weeks of childcare leave. They can split the leave - and statutory pay - between them either one after the other or both can be on leave at once. Fathers will also be entitled to time off (unpaid) to attend antenatal appointments.

This means more flexibility and allows mothers to return to work earlier if she wishes. It used to be the case that all leave would be taken at once. Under the new legislation time by either parent can be taken off in different sections, provided their employers agree.

Expectant parents need to give their employer an indicative break down of the leave they plan to take at least eight weeks before it starts, however are able to change their minds twice during the year of leave and put forward new proposals.

Remember these rights apply to nanny employers as well as their nannies.

How it affects nanny employers

Notice periods are built in to the scheme so employers can make plans for the nanny's intentions for leave. Employers cannot refuse to grant any leave entitled, however they can refuse requests for separate non continuous blocks of leave and insist that all leave requested is taken in one block. 'Keeping in touch' days continue to apply.

Statutory Adoption Pay and Leave will mirror Shared Parental Leave rights.