Changes to Parental Leave and Pay

The Government has responded to a consultation on parental leave and pay which was launched in 2019 with the Good Work Plan.

The aims of the consultation were to explore the objectives of parental leave and pay, determine how government policy supports parents and employers, identify if parents are able to combine work and childcare and examine the impact of these factors.

The Government received 185 responses from business representatives, trade unions and lobby groups. As a result, the Government will amend the current legislation to make it more flexible by taking forward the following measures:

  • Allowing partners to split their leave into two blocks of one week (previously, only one block of one or two weeks could be taken)
  • Supporting partners to take their leave and pay at any point in the first year after the birth or adoption of their child, instead of only within the first eight weeks
  • Making an adjustment to the way partners give notice of leave and pay to their employer.

The new measures will require an employee to give notice that they intend to take leave 15 weeks prior to the expected week of childbirth (EWC), and then four weeks’ notice of dates prior to each period of leave.

The reforms give partners and employers greater flexibility as the two weeks can be taken at any point in the first year after birth or adoption.

As with all legislative changes, 121 HR Solutions will automatically amend policies for clients, as changes are incorporated into law! If you would like more information about the 121 HR Solutions Partnership Service, please contact us at

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