As we enter into the new UK Fiscal Year, there is a change impacting the maternity provision in the United Kingdom which will only be available in England, Scotland and Wales.

Effective April 2015, Employees may be entitled to Shared Parental Leave (SPL) and Statutory Shared Parental Pay (ShPP) if:

  • their baby is due on or after 5 April 2015
  • they adopt a child on or after 5 April 2015

SPL and ShPP must be taken after the baby’s birth and before their first birthday (or within 1 year of adoption).

Employees can start SPL if they are eligible and if they or their partner end maternity or adoption leave or pay (or Maternity Allowance) early. The remaining leave will be available as SPL. The remaining weeks of pay will be available as ShPP.  They can share the leave with their partner if they are also eligible for SPL, and choose how much of the leave each of them will take.

Example:

A mother and her partner are both eligible for SPL. The mother ends her maternity leave after 14 weeks, leaving 38 weeks, (of the total 52-week entitlement) available for SPL. She takes 30 weeks and her partner takes the other 8 weeks.

For more information on the eligibility criteria, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/shared-parental-leave-and-pay/overview

Please note a fundamental is that it is the employee’s responsibility to request Shared Parental Leave with their employer.    It IS NOT the employer’s responsibility to advise about its existence or promote it, although you may if you wish.