Fathers or fathers-to-be now have rights to paid paternity leave if you meet certain conditions. What are those conditions and do you qualify?
Your Paternity Leave Rights
You are entitled to paid statutory paternity leave if you meet the following criteria:
- you are an employee with a contract of employment
- you are the biological father, the mother's husband or partner, the adopter or the partner of the adoptor
- you have been employed for at least 26 weeks by the end of the 15th week before the baby is due (or if you are an adopter the end of the week when you were matched with the child)
- you will be fully involved in bringing up the child
How Much Paternity Leave?
The basic entitlement is for one or two weeks leave with the leave being taken in one period. You can take the leave anytime from the day that the baby is born but you must have concluded it 56 days from the date of birth.
How Much Paternity Pay?
If your average weekly earnings are £90 or more, Statutory Paternity Pay is £123.06 or 90 per cent of your average weekly earnings if this is less. However, many employers will pay more than the statutory levels of paternity pay.
Time Off For Antenatal Appointments?
There is no right for a father to take paid time off for these appointments, although many employers will allow their staff to take paid or unpaid leave to attend these classes or appointments.
What If Your Paternity Rights Are Denied?
You should raise the matter with your employer and if it is still not authorised, you should seek early and expert legal advice. We can help you and often can provide fixed fee legal advice.
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