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New parent support (paternity) leave FAQs

Who qualifies for new parent support (paternity) leave?

To qualify for paternity leave the member of staff must be the:

  • Father
  • Husband or partner of the mother or adopter (this includes same-sex partners)
  • Child’s adopter where the other adoptive parent has taken adoption leave
  • Intended parent (where the member of staff is having a baby through a surrogacy arrangement)

To qualify for leave the member of staff must also have, or expect to have, responsibility for the upbringing of the child and be making the request to help care for the child or to support their partner.

The member of staff must have been continuously employed by the Trust or another NHS organisation for at least 26 weeks up to any day in the qualifying week or matching week.

The qualifying week for births is the 15th week before the baby is due.

The matching week for UK adoptions is the end of the week that the parents are matched with the child. For overseas adoptions it is the date the child enters the UK or when the parents want pay to start.

What forms need to be completed if the member of staff wishes to apply for new parent support (paternity) leave?

The member of staff will need to complete the new parent support (paternity) leave application form.

A copy of the MATB1 certification, baby’s birth certificate, matching certificate or eligibility letter must also be provided.

The member of staff will also be required to complete the following statutory paternity pay forms:

  • SC3 – birth parent
  • SC4 – UK adoptions or parental order parents following surrogacy
  • SC5 – overseas adoptions

How much notice does the member of staff need to provide when applying for leave?

The member of staff must provide as much notice as possible. A minimum of 15 weeks before the expected week of childbirth is expected.

A member of staff is going on paternity leave and wants to know whether there will be changes to any of their other terms and conditions, apart from pay?

There will be no changes to a member of staff’s terms and conditions of employment. Staff retain all the terms and conditions of employment during their paternity leave except for pay.

Continuous service is preserved with the Trust paying pension contributions and holiday entitlement accrues as normal.

Staff also have the right to return to exactly the same job after paternity leave.

What does a manager need to do when they receive a paternity leave application from a member of staff?

Managers must ensure they are familiar with the Trust’s parent support (paternity) leave procedure.

Further information on the processes to follow can also be found on the application process page.

It is important managers arrange to meet with the member of staff if there is an appropriate need to do so. If not, managers must review the details provided, including the relevant documentation and confirm the leave arrangements in writing using the standard letter template.

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