Types of leave and pay


Compulsory maternity leave (CMP)

first 2 weeks of leave after the birth which the mother must take (it is 4 weeks for factory workers)

Additional adoption leave AAL

2nd 26 weeks of leave

Shared parental leave (SPL)

Up to 50 weeks leave which can be shared between parents

Ordinary maternity leave (OML)

1st 26 weeks with a right to return to exactly the same job

Statutory maternity pay (SMP)

Payable for 39 weeks, subject to qualifying conditions

Shared parental pay (ShPP)

Maternity pay may become shared parental pay which parents share

Additional maternity leave (AML)

2nd 26 weeks of maternity leave where there is qualified right to return to same job

Maternity allowance (MA)

Allowance for mothers who are not entitled to SMP

Parental leave (unpaid)

Up to 18 weeks unpaid leave to care for a child under 18, usually restricted to 4 weeks per child in each year.

Ordinary Adoption leave (OAL)

1st 26 weeks of leave; there is one primary adopted

Paternity leave (PL)

2 weeks’ paid at flat rate of pay

Time of for dependants (TOD)

Unpaid reasonable time off to care for a dependant in an emergency

Leave curtailment notice:

Notice shortening maternity leave which must be given by M before SPL can be taken

Pay curtailment notice:

Notice shortening statutory maternity pay period


Main tests of eligibility


Notice of entitlement to SPL:

Sets out details of both parents, dates of SPL to be taken by M or P.

Notice to reduce maternity pay or maternity allowance:

Declaration by mother, with partner’s declaration: that M satisfies conditions of entitlement, information is correct and M will inform R if she is no long entitled

Declaration by father, with mother’s declaration:

P’s name, address ,NI number, states P is eligible, confirming relationship with M, consent to leave M will take



Notice to book SPL:

Notice that M or P want to take SPL on specified dates, which may be continuous or discontinuous leave

Notice to vary leave

Notice that M or P want to vary their leave

Continuous leave:

one block of SPL

Discontinuous leave:

SPL taken in up to 3 separate periods of at least one week at a time


Other terms


Keeping in touch days (Kit days);

up to 10 days can be worked during SML if employer and employee agree

SPLIT days:

20 Days that an employee can work during shared parental leave