1. Overview

When you take time off because your partner’s having a baby, adopting a child or having a baby through a surrogacy arrangement you might be eligible for:

  • 1 or 2 weeks paid Paternity Leave
  • up to 26 weeks’ paid Additional Paternity Leave, if your child was due or placed for adoption before 5 April 2015
  • Shared Parental Leave, if your child was due or placed for adoption on or after 5 April 2015

You can only get Additional Paternity Leave if your partner returns to work.

You may not get both leave and pay, and there are rules on how to claim and when your leave can start.

Work out your paternity leave dates online.

Employment rights when on leave

Your employment rights are protected while on paternity leave. This includes your right to:

  • pay rises
  • build up (accrue) holiday
  • return to work

You can get time off to accompany your partner (or the surrogate mother) to 2 antenatal appointments.

If you’re adopting a child, you can get time off to attend 2 adoption appointments after you’ve been matched with a child.