31st January 2013


 Issue No.  2013/02




The right to take Parental Leave (not to be confused with paternity, maternity or adoption leave) has been with us for some years and currently provides for employees who have a child aged under five (or under 18 if the child is disabled),to take up to 13 weeks' unpaid parental leave to care for the welfare of a child (with a maximum of 4 weeks leave per year).

The Parental Leave Directive (2010/18/EC), which actually came into force last year on 8 March 2012, increased the minimum parental leave provision from three to four months. At that time however the Government made use of an exception that allowed member states an extra year for implementation.

We are therefore approaching the implementation of the increased entitlement and the right to unpaid parental leave will increase from 13 weeks to 18 weeks with effect from 8 March 2013.

We have produced an updated Employers Fact Sheet explaining the right to Parental Leave which is available to current clients on our website: www.sentientuk.co.uk

If you have any queries on this subject please do not hesitate to contact us.

Just as a reminder the current statutory leave entitlements for family related leave are as follows –



Up to 52 weeks maternity leave, regardless of their length of service with the employer. The right to maternity pay is subject to qualifying criteria.




One or Two weeks Ordinary Paternity leave and up to 26 weeks’ Additional Paternity Leave (only if the child’s mother has returned to work) subject to qualifying criteria. Paternity leave is unpaid




Up to 52 weeks subject to qualifying criteria.




A reasonable amount of time off to deal with certain unexpected or sudden emergencies and to make longer term arrangements. 


Again we have Employers Fact Sheets explaining these rights in greater detail available to current clients on the web site.





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