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Paternity Pay and Leave are statutory rights: eligible staff may take up to 2 weeks’ paid time off work (pro rata for part-time staff) to provide care and support to their family after their partner has given birth, or adopted a child. This includes adopting a baby through surrogacy and ‘fostering to adopt’ arrangements. The University has also extended this statutory right to the mother’s nominated carer in certain circumstances as described in the Eligibility section below (see section 4).
The aims of this policy are to explain:
the provisions of paternity leave and pay
who is eligible
how to apply.
This policy applies to all eligible employees of the University.
See the Shared Parental Leave (add link) for additional leave and pay.
To qualify for Paternity Leave and Pay employees must:
be the biological father of the child or be the spouse, or civil partner of the child’s mother, or in the case of adoption, be an adoptive parent or the adopter's spouse, civil partner, and inclusive of all gender identities.
be the pregnant employee’s nominated carer (i.e. someone providing close personal support in a situation where the employee does not have a partner and is not being supported by the child’s father.) Normally only available to a member of the mother’s immediate family.
have 26 weeks’ or more continuous service by the 15th week before the expected week of childbirth (EWC)
for UK adoption, at least 26 weeks up to and including the week your spouse, civil or long-term partner was matched with a child for adoption
for overseas adoption, have worked continuously for at least 26 weeks by either the date the child arrives in the UK or when they want their pay to start;
remain in employment up to the date the baby is born or placed with the adopter;
have average earnings above the LEL (Lower Earnings Limit) in an 8 week “relevant” period.
This calculation will be especially relevant to those who work on a casual/hourly-paid basis or have been on unpaid leave. Payroll will be able to check this for employees;
have or expect to have responsibility for the child’s upbringing and be requesting leave to either support the mother/adopter or to care for the child;
To enable employees to balance work and family commitments the University, subject to eligibility, has enhanced the statutory entitlements for partners as illustrated in the table below:
As statutory entitlement but leave can also be taken as individual days.
An additional week (pro rata) of leave in the case of multiple births.
To apply for Paternity Leave eligible employees should give at least 15 weeks’ before the baby's due date notice of their planned dates using the Application for Paid Paternity Leave form, which should be authorised by the line manager and forwarded to the HR department following completion. HR will write to the employee confirming the Paternity Pay and Leave arrangements. The employee will also be given a link to the appropriate government form (SC3,4 or 5) which they will need to complete on-line.
Terms and conditions of employment will remain unchanged during Paternity Leave and any salary deductions, such as pension, trade union subscriptions, etc, will be deducted as usual.
In the sad event of a miscarriage after the start of the 24th week of pregnancy, or a baby is born alive at any point in the pregnancy but later dies, eligible employees will still qualify for Paternity Leave.
Employees will be treated compassionately and any absence from work will be handled under the normal sick pay and/or compassionate leave arrangements. Support may be provided by Occupational Health including the option for counselling.