Paternity Leave Policy

Application form: Paternity Leave Form (Office document, 50kB)

Introduction

The University is committed to supporting all employees who have a child, adopt a child, foster a child for adoption or are ‘Parental Order’ intended parents in a surrogacy arrangement. This policy is designed to ensure that all members of staff are treated fairly and consistently and in line with the relevant legislation. Following the birth or placement, eligible employees can take up to two weeks’ paid paternity leave to care for the child and/or to support the other parent.

Antenatal appointments

Employees who are eligible for paternity leave are also entitled to take paid time off work to attend up to 2 antenatal appointments.

Paternity leave

a) Eligibility

You must be taking time off to look after the child and be one of the following:

You must also:

*In the case of couples who are adopting a child or having a child through a surrogacy arrangement, adoption leave and pay are available to only one member of the couple. The other person can take paternity leave.

b) Entitlements

Employees who meet the above eligibility criteria can choose to take either one week or two consecutive weeks of paternity leave.  Paternity leave must be taken in a single block and cannot be taken as odd days or as two separate weeks.

During paternity leave, eligible employees will be paid by the University at their normal rate of pay.  (This will include an element of Statutory Paternity Pay (SPP) where appropriate, which is effectively enhanced by the University to equal full pay).

Employees can take only one period of leave per pregnancy even if more than one baby is born as the result of the same pregnancy.

c) When can paternity leave be taken?

Employees can choose to start their Paternity Leave on any day of the week either:

Paternity Leave must be completed:

d) Notification process

Employees should discuss their intention to take paternity leave with their line manager as early as possible so that early consideration can be given to covering work during their absence.

To qualify for paternity leave, employees must formally tell the University that they wish to take paternity leave by completing the Paternity Leave Form (Office document, 50kB) and submitting it to their line manager inside the statutory time limit which is:

If an employee experiences any difficulty in notifying the University inside the stated timeframe, they should contact HR Employee Services for advice.  The University reserves the right to refuse paternity leave/pay if due notice is not given.

Employees can change the date they want their Paternity Leave to start providing they give their line manager at least 28 days’ notice (unless this is not reasonably practicable).

The line manager should forward the form to the Head of School/Division, who should complete the authorisation section of the relevant Paternity Leave form, confirm authorisation to the employee and forward the form to the Faculty/Divisional HR team. 

Related Policies

Shared Parental Leave

Subject to eligibility, it is possible to convert Maternity/Adoption leave to Shared Parental Leave which can then be shared between the two parents/partners, allowing both to take time off work during the first year of a baby's life.  For more information see the Shared Parental Leave Policy.

Flexible Working

All employees with at least 26 weeks' continuous employment have a statutory right to request a flexible working arrangement, which may involve a change in hours or working pattern. Employers have a statutory duty to consider requests in a reasonable manner (but are not obliged to agree).  For more information see the Flexible Working Policy.

Parental Leave

Employees with at least one year's continuous employment have the right to take up to four weeks per year of unpaid 'parental leave' for each child under the age of 18, up to an overall total of 18 weeks' unpaid parental leave per child.  For more information see the Parental Leave Scheme.

Useful links

Paternity information and FAQs: http://www.bristol.ac.uk/equalityanddiversity/workandfamily/dads/paternityfaq_html

Dads at work pages: http://www.bristol.ac.uk/equalityanddiversity/workandfamily/dads/

Nursery Provision:  http://www.bristol.ac.uk/hr/nursery-main/


Updated August 2016