Am I entitled to any paternity benefits?

Paternity benefit
Content supplied by NHS Choices

Entitlement to paternity benefits depends on your circumstances, including:

  • your employment status, for example, whether you’re an employee
  • whether your partner is returning to work

Ordinary Paternity Leave

You may have the right to Ordinary Paternity Leave if you:

  • are going to be a father, or
  • will be responsible with the mother for bringing up a child

To qualify, you must be an employee. Other eligibility rules also apply to Ordinary Paternity Leave.

If you qualify, you can take one or two weeks off. If you take two weeks, you must take them together. Rights to Ordinary Paternity Leave are on top of your normal holiday allowance.

Some types of worker do not qualify for Ordinary Paternity Leave, but they may be entitled to Ordinary Statutory Paternity Pay (SPP).

The Directgov website has more details about Ordinary Paternity Leave, as well as information to help you understand your employment status.

Ordinary Statutory Paternity Pay (SPP)

If your wife, partner or civil partner gives birth to or adopts a child, you may be entitled to Ordinary SPP. Eligibility rules apply to Ordinary SPP.

If you qualify, Ordinary SPP is paid for up to two consecutive weeks. From April 2011, the weekly rate for Ordinary SPP is:

  • £128.73, or
  • if lower, 90% of your average weekly earnings

Directgov has more information about Ordinary Statutory Paternity Pay.

Additional Paternity Leave and Pay

If your baby was born on or after April 3 2011, and your partner is returning to work, you may have the right to up to 26 weeks’ Additional Paternity Leave. To qualify, you must be an employee. Other eligibility rules also apply to Additional Paternity Leave.

If your partner has returned to work, you can take the leave between 20 weeks and one year after your child is born or placed for adoption. This is on top of your entitlement to two weeks of Ordinary Paternity Leave.

You may be entitled to receive Additional SPP while your partner is receiving Statutory Maternity Pay, Maternity Allowance or Adoption Pay. Eligibility rules apply to Additional SPP.

From April 2011, the weekly rate for Additional SPP is:

  • £128.73, or
  • if lower, 90% of your average weekly earnings

Some types of worker do not qualify for Additional Paternity Leave, but they may be entitled to Additional SPP.

Directgov has more information about Additional Paternity Leave and Pay.

Antenatal appointments

You don’t have a legal right to time off to go to antenatal appointments with your partner. This right only applies to pregnant employees. However, many employers do let their employees take paid time off or make up the time.

For information about maternity benefits and maternity leave, see Am I entitled to any pregnancy benefits?

Directgov has more information about paternity rights in the workplace.

Read the answers to more questions about pregnancy.

Source:

NHS Choices

Published Date 2011-04-13

Last Review Date 2011-04-06

Photography: Drew and Merissa @Flickr

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