Frequently asked questions

No, the baby must be due on or after 5 April 2015, regardless of when it is born. This is the same for adoption. It is the date they are notified of the match.

The mother/primary adopter must return to work from maternity/adoption leave or curtail their maternity/adoption leave in order for Shared Parental Leave to start.

When the mother or primary adopter chooses to end their maternity/adoption pay or maternity allowance (reducing mat/adoption pay period). The balance will become available as Shared Parental Pay, to a total of 37 weeks.

You must give the University notice that you wish to end your maternity/adoption leave (known as notice of curtailment), although you must have the first two weeks after the birth of the child as maternity/adoption leave. The untaken maternity/adoption weeks are then converted into Shared Parental Leave (a maximum total of 50 weeks’ leave and 37 weeks’ pay).

The mother/primary adopter must have the first two weeks after the birth/placement of the child as maternity/adoption leave. Then the parents can decide how to take the rest of the 50 weeks’ leave, or whatever is left if the mother/primary adopter has taken time prior to the birth/matching.

At least 8 weeks before the start date of the Shared Parental Leave. However, it is best practice to ensure that early discussions have taken place.

If you are the mother and an employee of the University please complete PD48a (curtailment of maternity/adoption leave and notice of entitlement) and then PD48c (planned notice of leave). If you are the partner and an employee of the University then please complete PD48b (notice of entitlement) and PD48c (planned notice of leave).

If you have requested a continuous period of Shared Parental leave, then the University must agree to this. If you request a discontinuous period of Shared Parental Leave then the University can refuse or propose alternatives dates.

You can make up to three separate requests for Shared Parental Leave.

If you are eligible the University is offering an enhanced Shared Parental Pay scheme. You will be eligible to a maximum of 6 weeks’ full pay (following maternity/adoption leave), followed by 16 weeks’ half pay plus statutory Shared Parental Pay, and followed by 15 weeks’ statutory Shared Parental Pay and an unpaid period of 13 weeks. However, please note that the legislation is for ‘shared’ parental leave and so the entitlement is per couple, not per parent. The amount you will get paid depends upon how you are sharing it with your partner. The pay will be worked out on a calendar basis from the start of maternity/adoption leave, see the pay section and examples for further details.

The University can request a copy of the child's birth / adoption matching certificate and the name and address of your partner's employer. You must provide this within 14 days of the request. If the SPL request is received before the actual birth, the birth certificate must be provided within 14 days of the birth.

The University will rely on the declarations provided by you and your partner that you both meet the various eligibility requirements. We will not check the earnings and employment history of your partner, unless there is good cause to doubt the veracity of your declarations.

Any false declaration that you and your partner are entitled to Shared Parental Leave and/or pay will be treated as a disciplinary issue.

There are days called Shared Parental Leave in touch days (SPLIT) days, each employee can use up to 20 days in agreement with the University. This is in addition to any days taken during maternity leave or adoption leave.
Please see the During leave web page for further information.

During Shared Parental Leave you are entitled to the same terms and conditions that would have applied had you not taken the leave, with the exception of remuneration.

Fixed term employees

If you are employed on a fixed term contract, your employment and payment of University Shared Parental Pay will end on the expiry date of the fixed term contract, although statutory Shared Parental Pay will continue to be paid if eligible, as long as you don't start work again during this period.

Returning to work

If you receive University Shared Parental Pay, the University may reclaim from you all or part of the non-statutory element of this parental pay if you fail to return to work for at least 3 months following your Shared Parental Leave (or an equivalent period of time if you reduce your hours). This excludes any non-working periods (e.g. SPLIT days, parental leave, vacation time for term time only workers).
Please see the University policy on overpayments for details on how the money would be repaid by you to the University.

All Shared Parental Leave will be pensionable (subject to the rules of the pension scheme you are a member of – for information see the pensions webpage) and will be taken into account for any entitlement to pay increments.
You can find out full details by looking on our Pensions website or by contacting the Pensions team.

Annual Leave

You are advised to take as much outstanding leave as possible before the start of your Shared Parental Leave, however you should discuss your leave arrangements with your line manager and clarify and record the agreement made with them.

As a minimum, you are required to take the annual leave you have accrued up to the date you commence your Shared Parental Leave, e.g. if you wish to commence your Shared Parental Leave on 1 February, you should have taken 1/12th of your leave entitlement. However, your manager may agree to allow you to take more than the period accrued up to the start of your Shared Parental Leave.

Accruing annual leave during Shared Parental Leave

You will continue to accrue annual leave during the period of SPL which can be taken when your SPL finishes and you return to work. Leave should be taken within the year in which it is accrued, except in those circumstances where your period of SPL continues into the next calendar year (and, therefore, a new annual leave year). In such cases, any outstanding leave may be carried forward to the following year, providing it is taken in full, immediately following the period of SPL. Payment in lieu of annual leave cannot be made.

During your SPL, bank holidays and closure days that fall on days you would have worked, will be marked as 'not taken' in Trent and will not be deducted from your holiday entitlement. You will be able to book this leave in Trent.

Please see the details on the maternity leave webpages for regarding salary exchange. The University will match the arrangement for maternity/adoption leave.

If you have had 26 weeks or less of Shared Parental Leave plus any maternity/adoption or paternity leave you have the right to return to the same job. If:

  • you have been on leave for more than 26 weeks when added to any other period of relevant statutory leave taken in relation to the child; or
  • the Shared Parental Leave was the last of two or more consecutive periods of relevant statutory leave which included a period of parental leave of more than four weeks, a period of additional maternity leave, or a period of additional adoption leave, (regardless of whether the total amount of relevant statutory leave taken is 26 weeks or less)

you are entitled to return from leave to the job in which you were employed before the absence, or, if it is not reasonably practicable for the University to permit you to return to that job, to another job which is both suitable and appropriate for you in the circumstances.

If you have any other FAQs that you cannot find the answer to please send the question to humanresources@exeter.ac.uk