The Act will bring a number of new employment rights into law on a variety of dates, as follows:
30 June 2014: The right to request flexible working will be available to all employees with six months’ service, not just parents and carers. The existing statutory procedure will be abolished and will be replaced by a general duty on employers to give ‘reasonable consideration’ to flexible working requests.
1 October 2014: Fathers and partners will be able to take time off to attend up to two antenatal appointments.
5 April 2015: Mothers, fathers and adopters will be able to take shared parental leave within the first year after the birth or adoption of a child. The new right will apply to babies due or children placed for adoption on or after 5 April 2015. Adopters’ rights to pay and leave will also be amended to fall into line with those of birth parents.
We have updated our factsheet on flexible working and shared parental leave to take account of these changes and you can access it here.