Entitlements during Ordinary Paternity Leave and returning to work
You get all your normal employment benefits (apart from wages) during your Ordinary Paternity Leave. You will be able to go back to the same job and your employer shouldn't treat you unfairly or sack you for taking, or asking to take Ordinary Paternity Leave.
What happens to your holiday entitlements
You will still build up your entitlement to paid holiday during Ordinary Paternity Leave. You cannot take annual leave during Ordinary Paternity Leave but you may be able to extend your time off by taking a period of annual leave immediately before or after Ordinary Paternity Leave.
Your pension contributions
If your employer contributes to an occupational pension scheme they must carry on making their usual contributions for the whole time you are on paid paternity leave.
If you normally make contributions to your pension you should carry on doing so, based on the amount of paternity pay that you are getting.
Returning to the same job
At the end of your Ordinary Paternity Leave, you have the right to return to the same job as before on the same employment terms and conditions as if you had not been away.
If a redundancy situation arises while you are on Ordinary Paternity Leave you should be treated the same as any other employee. This includes being consulted about the redundancy and being considered for other jobs.
You are also entitled to benefit from any general improvements to the rate of pay or other terms and conditions introduced while you were away.
It is unlawful for your employer to dismiss you or treat you unfairly as a result of taking Ordinary Paternity Leave or seeking to take Ordinary Paternity Leave.
If you do not wish to return to work, you should give the notice outlined in your employment contract. You do not have to pay back Ordinary Statutory Paternity Pay if you do not return to work.
Taking parental leave after Ordinary Paternity Leave
If you need more time off to look after your child you may be able to take parental leave.
You can take a certain amount of parental leave without impacting your right to return to work. If you take more than that amount you will be able to return to the same job unless this is not reasonably practical. If this is the case you must be offered alternative work that is suitable to you and with terms and conditions as if you hadn’t been absent.
Parents of children under 17 and under 18 if the child is disabled, are entitled to request to work a flexible working pattern. This can help you balance caring for your child and work. Your employer must consider your request and respond to you in writing.
What to do if you have problems
If you have a problem during your Ordinary Paternity Leave or when you return to work, talk to your employer first of all - it may be a simple misunderstanding. If this doesn't work, you may need to make a complaint using your employer’s grievance procedure.