Pregnant Employees have the right to 26 weeks of what is called “ordinary maternity leave” and a further additional 26 weeks. Pregnant Employees can also have a reasonable time off for antenatal care.
An Employee needs to inform their Employer of their pregnancy by no later than the end of the 15th week before the expected birth and maternity leave can start at any date provided it is not before the 11th week before the expected birth. On receipt of notification of the birth to the Employer, an Employer must write to their Employee within 28 days with a date for their return.
It is important that Employers and Employees communicate fully with each other both pre and post birth.
For those with babies born after 5 April 2015, couples may be able to take benefit of the new Shared Parental Leave rights.
The Attwaters Jameson Hill Employment Law team has a proven track record of successfully assisting Employers in dealing with the challenges of these principles and procedures, providing guidance as to best practice.