No 93 The Shared Parental Leave Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2015

These Regulations come into operation on 15/3/15 and by way of summary the Shared Parental Leave Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2015 (“the Leave Regulations”), in association with the Statutory Shared Parental Pay (General) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2015 (“the Pay Regulations”) provide an entitlement for a mother/adopter and a child’s father/adoptive parent or a mother’s or adopter’s partner to take shared parental leave and pay. 


The right to shared parental leave and statutory shared parental pay are new statutory rights for employees with a partner who is working, or has recently been working (whether employed or self-employed). Eligible employees will be able to share up to 50 weeks of shared parental leave and up to 37 weeks of statutory shared parental pay.

These Regulations set out the qualifying requirements that must be satisfied by an employee, and also by their partner, for the employee to qualify for shared parental leave. They also set out the notice and evidence requirements which must be met for the employee to qualify for shared parental leave.

Shared parental leave can be taken at any time between the birth of a child, or the placement of a child for adoption or with prospective adopters, and must be taken before the child’s first birthday or the first anniversary of the placement. Shared parental leave arises from untaken maternity leave or untaken adoption leave. An eligible mother or adopter must curtail her maternity or adoption leave in order for shared parental leave to arise. She or he may do this, as now, by simply returning to work. Or she or he may do it giving notice to curtail their maternity or adoption leave at a specified future date. The curtailment of maternity or adoption leave and pay is facilitated by separate regulations.

Last updated: 26 March 2019