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All You Need To Know About South African Paternity Leave

18 March 2019 | 0 comments | Posted by Che Kohler in Parental Guidance

How paternity leave works in South Africa

Bringing a child into the world is no easy task, and no matter how much support you have or how well prepared you think you may be. It will still require considerable effort to adjust, especially in those first few weeks. New parents often struggle to find that balance early on and a little time off to acclimatise can make all the difference. While working mothers have had maternity leave assist in the transition, fathers have not had the same option, unit now. South Africa has now passed into law a new bill which allows working South African dads ten days of paternity leave after the birth of their children.

What is paternity leave?

Paternity leave, also known as parental leave, or family leave, is an employee benefit available in many countries. The term refers to an employee having a period of absence from work granted to a father after or shortly before the birth of his child.

How does paternity leave work in South Africa?

The new South African Labour Laws Amendment Bill allows for parental leave, adoption leave and commissioning parental leave to employees as follows: 

  • An employee, who is a parent of a child, is entitled to ten consecutive days of parental leave.
  • An employee, who is an adoptive parent of a child below the age of two, is entitled to Adoption leave of at least ten consecutive weeks; or At least ten consecutive days of parental leave. 
  • An employee, who is a commissioning parent in a surrogacy agreement, is entitled to: Commissioning parental leave of ten consecutive weeks; or At least ten consecutive days of parental leave.

Can fathers claim UIF during paternity leave in South Africa?

As of January 2019, Fathers who take parental leave will be able to apply for an economic relief which will be paid out of the workers Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF).

Have anything to add?

What do you think of the new paternity leave law? Is it a step in the right direction? We would love to hear your opinion in the comments below.

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