Rights for Working Parents and Carers

5. Adoption Leave

5.1 An employee who adopts a child from a UK adoption agency is entitled to time off to settle the child in its new home.

  • They can take up to 26 weeks of ordinary adoption leave if they have worked for you continuously for at least 26 weeks by the time they are matched with a child.
  • They can also take up to 26 weeks of additional adoption leave.
  • They are entitled to statutory adoption pay of £136.78 per week or 90% of average pay if lower for up to 39 weeks of adoption leave.
  • Where the child has been adopted by a couple, the other partner may be entitled to paternity leave (see 4.1-4.3) and additional adoption or paternity leave.?

5.2 There are conditions to this entitlement.

  • There must be an agreement to adopt. You are entitled to ask for evidence of it.
  • The employee must have been newly matched with the child by an adoption agency. Adopting within the family, or an existing foster child, does not count.

5.3 The employee must give reasonable notice.

  • This must be at least 28 days before the date the agency expects to place the child.
  • The start date can be changed but the employee must give you 28 days’ notice.

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