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If you are an employee and expecting a baby you could be entitled to paternity leave. Here we go through how you qualify for it, and how you get it.
Basically, if you have been employed by the same employer since before your partner became pregnant, you'll probably be eligible for paternity leave - but you'll need to still be employed by them when the baby is born.
NB. If you changed jobs very shortly before the pregnancy, you will need to check the dates.
Some employers have better eligibility terms than these so always check your contract or speak to their HR department.
To take paternity leave you must give your employer written notice around week 25 or 26 of pregnancy.
In the case of an adoption you must give your employer written notice within seven days of being told by the adoption agency that you have been matched with a child
A simple way to give notice is to fill in a 'self-certificate'. You can download form SC3 'Becoming a parent', which works as a self-certificate.
Employers have to consider late notice and have to be reasonable about accepting it, so if you are late, give notice as soon as you can.
Your employer might ask you to fill in a form which asks you for all this information.
If you don't qualify for paternity leave you have a few options:
Catherine Rogan has worked for Working Families' advice service for four years.