Employees qualify if all of these apply:
- they’ve been in the company for more than a year
- they’re named on the child’s birth or adoption certificate or they have or expect to have parental responsibility
- they’re not self-employed or a ‘worker’, eg an agency worker or contractor
- they’re not a foster parent (unless they’ve secured parental responsibility through the courts)
- the child is under 18
Employers can ask for proof (like a birth certificate) as long as it’s reasonable to do so, eg they can’t ask for proof each time an employee requests leave.
Employers can extend parental leave to those groups who aren’t eligible. Employees can check this in their staff handbook.