Explanatory Notes on Adoptive Leave
HR 108(a)_V2_May 2018 Page 4 of 4 30/05/2018
The Adoptive Leave Acts 1995 and 2005 provide for the granting of adoptive leave to the following:
All adopting mothers
All sole male adopters
All adopting fathers where the adopting mother has died before or during the period for adoptive leave
or additional adoptive leave.
Adoptive Leave Entitlements
An employee is entitled to 24 consecutive weeks’ (paid) adoptive leave.
An employee is also entitled to take 16 weeks’ (unpaid) additional adoptive leave immediately after the end of
ordinary adoptive leave.
In the case of a foreign adoption, some or all of the 16 weeks’ additional adoptive leave may be taken immediately
before the date of placement.
An employee must give notice in writing, at least 4 weeks before the expected day of placement of the child, of his /
her intention to take adoptive leave. If the day of placement is postponed the leave may be postponed until the new
day of placement.
An employee must give at least 4 weeks’ notice in writing of his/her intention to take additional adoptive leave.
Payment while on Adoptive Leave
While the adoptive leave legislation does not protect the employee’s entitlement to remuneration, the health service
operates an adoptive pay scheme as follows:
All employees on adoptive leave are entitled to their basic pay plus normal fixed allowances less any adoptive
benefit to which they may be entitled on foot of their social welfare contributions. This does not include additional
amounts due to nightwork, overtime, shiftwork, working unsociable hours, standby or on-call allowances.
Employees are required to make the necessary claims for adoptive benefit to the Department of Employment Affairs
and Social Protection within the required time limits and to comply with whatever requirements are laid down by that
Department as a condition of claiming benefit.
No payment is made in respect of additional adoptive leave.
As per the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection information on Adoptive Benefit and the rules
around Payment Abroad, EU citizens (and citizens of Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein or Switzerland)can get
Adoptive Benefit for any period of their adoptive leave spent in another EU country (or in Norway, Iceland,
Liechtenstein or Switzerland). EU and non EU citizens can holiday abroad and get Adoptive Benefit for a maximum
of 6 weeks while away. To get Adoptive Benefit while abroad, you need to inform DEASP Adoptive Benefit section
of your intended absence
Attendance at Pre-adoption Classes and Meetings
Adopting parents are entitled to time off during work hours without loss of pay to attend preparation classes and
pre-adoption meetings with social workers/ Health Service Executive officials required during the adoption process2
An employee is required give notice to his/her Department Head as soon as is reasonably practicable but not later
than 2 weeks before the date of the first class/meeting. An employee is required to submit documentation to
confirm the date(s) and time(s) of such classes/meetings.
Return to Work
An employee who has been absent on adoptive leave is entitled to return to the same job as previously held, under
the same contract of employment. An employee must give at least 4 weeks’ notice in writing of the date on which
s/he intends to return to work after adoptive leave or additional adoptive leave.
This applies only to pre-adoption classes and meetings within the State.