How much notice that they intend to take shared parental leave must employees give?

An employee must give his or her employer at least eight weeks' notice to take a period of shared parental leave.

There are a number of different notices that employees must give before they can take shared parental leave.

Before either parent can take shared parental leave, the mother must give her employer a leave curtailment notice, setting out the date on which she intends to bring her maternity leave to an end. This must be given no less than eight weeks before the start of the first period of shared parental leave taken by either of the parents.

At the same time as the mother gives the leave curtailment notice she must give her employer:

  • a notice of entitlement and intention to take shared parental leave, providing the employer with information including how much shared parental leave the parents each intend to take and an indication as to when the mother intends to take leave (which is non-binding); or
  • a declaration stating that her partner has given his or her employer a notice of entitlement and intention to take shared parental leave and that she consents to her partner taking that amount of leave.

The employee, whether the mother or her partner, must give his or her employer a notice of entitlement and intention to take shared parental leave not less than eight weeks before the start of his or her first period of shared parental leave.

In addition, no less than eight weeks before each period of shared parental leave, the employee taking the leave must give his or her employer a period of leave notice, setting out the start and end dates of the period or periods of leave requested.

There are similar notice requirements for employees taking shared parental leave when adopting a child.