As previously announced in the last Budget, from 1 July 2022 Parent’s Leave, available to anyone with a child under 2 years of age or who adopted a child within the last 2 years, has been extended from 5 to 7 weeks.

There is no service requirement to be eligible for Parent’s Leave and the associated benefit can be claimed by employees with the required level of social insurance (PRSI) contribution from the Department of Social Protection.

The additional two weeks’ Parent’s Leave can be claimed by employees if their child is under the age of 2 or if their adopted child has been placed with the family for less than 2 years on 1 July 2022. The parent must complete the extra leave on or before their child’s second birthday or within 2 years of the adoption placement.

Future expansion

This is the second increase in entitlement since the commencement of the Parent’s Leave and Benefit Act and there is still scope for expansion. The government has commented that they are committed to expand the Parent’s Leave and Benefit to 9 weeks in line with the European Work Life Balance Directive. Employers are advised to review and update their Parent’s Leave policy to reflect the new changes.