Please can you provide advice re paid paternity leave? We have received an application from a male, applying for paid leave following the birth of a child. The employee advises the mother is now in a civil partnership relationship with another female. As the mother is in a civil relationship, does the mother’s civil partner count as 'the other parent' of the child for the purposes of paid paternity leave? Or perhaps the father and the civil partner are both entitled to receive paternity pay if they will both have an interest in caring for the baby?

Posted in : First Tuesday Q&A NI on 1 April 2014
Arthur Cox
Arthur Cox
Issues covered:

Some employers have their own paternity leave and pay arrangements in place which are more generous than the statutory minimum requirements. In the absence of these provisions, however, to qualify for Ordinary Paternity Leave in Northern Ireland, the employee who is claiming must be either:

  • the biological father of the child;
  • the mother's husband or partner (including same-sex relationships);
  • the child's adopter; or
  • the husband or partner (including same-sex relationships) of the child's adopter.

In addition to being one of these, the employee must also be able to demonstrate the following:-

  • that they will be taking the time off to support the mother (or the carer of the baby);
  • that they

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Back to Q&A's This article is correct at 02/09/2015

The information in this article is provided as part of Legal-Island's Employment Law Hub. We regret we are not able to respond to requests for specific legal or HR queries and recommend that professional advice is obtained before relying on information supplied anywhere within this article.

Arthur Cox
Arthur Cox

The main content of this article was provided by Arthur Cox. Contact telephone number is +44 28 9026 2673 or email

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