karen talbot News

The Paternity Leave Scheme will come into effect in September 2016, after legislation for the entitlement has been passed through the Dáil, meaning fathers will have the option to apply for two weeks’ paid paternity leave following the birth of their child.

Until now, Ireland has been behind the majority of European countries in its exclusion of paternity leave from employment law. Typically, fathers used days from their annual leave, however this could be granted or denied at an employer’s discretion.

The new statutory paternity leave will be paid at a rate of €230 per week, the same as maternity benefit, and based on the same PRSI contribution requirements.

Director of HR organisation CIPD Mary Connaughton says she would like to see more flexibility to allow couples to distribute their leave. “Currently, the mother has 26 weeks’ paid leave and the father will now have two which is a total of 28 weeks’ paid leave, so ideally they should have more options in terms of controlling how they distribute that leave,” she said.

Contact us on or (01) 9020031 for advice on how this legislation impacts on your business’ HR policies, practices & procedures.