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Shared Parental Leave law became effective on 5 April 2015

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Parents in work can now share responsibility for looking after their newborn or newly adopted child as Shared Parental Leave law becomes effective 5 April 2015.

Eligible couples whose child is due on or after Sunday 5 April 2015 can now share up to 50 weeks of leave and 37 weeks of pay in the first year of their child’s life. Couples who adopt a child can share the same benefits as parents to the first year of the child’s adoption.

Parents can take the time off at the same time as each other or separately. An estimated 285,000 couples a year will be able to take advantage of this change in the law. Shared parental leave and pay are only available in England, Scotland and Wales.

To work out what you may be entitled to you’ll need to know:

  • your employment status (eg employed or worker)
  • the date you started your current job
  • the date you finished work (if you’ve finished)
  • how much you earn
  • when you want your leave to start
  • how much leave you want to take

You’ll need the same information about your partner if you plan to share the care of the child with them.

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