Shared parental leave lets parents share statutory leave and pay when their child is born or when they adopt a child. Parents can choose how they allocate shared parental leave between them and whether they wish to take the leave separately or simultaneously. The Government has stated that the new system is an attempt to move away from old-fashioned, inflexible arrangements in favour of a new, more equal system which allows both parents to assist with childcare while benefiting from the right to return to work.

This members-only factsheet examines the full set of eligibility criteria for shared parental leave and the conditions outlined by the Shared Parental Leave Regulations 2014. Key considerations include the impact of shared parental leave on maternity and paternity leave, how the system works, shared parental pay, and what protection is available for employees taking up shared parental leave.

CIPD viewpoint

What is shared parental leave and why has it been introduced?

Impact of shared parental leave on maternity and paternity leave

How does shared parental leave work?

Protections for employees taking up shared parental leave

Adoption and surrogacy

Action points for employers

Useful contacts and further reading

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