Introduction to this document

Adoption leave request form

Both male and female employees are entitled to take adoption leave and may be entitled to statutory adoption pay where they adopt a new child. However, only one partner is eligible to take adoption leave and they must provide you with essential information in order to take it.

Adoption leave entitlement

Employees benefit from a number of statutory “family-friendly” rights, including the right to adoption leave. Adoption leave is available to individuals who adopt, or one partner of a couple where the couple adopt jointly. The couple may choose which partner takes adoption leave. The other half of the couple is entitled to take paternity leave. The right entitles eligible employees to take paid leave when a child is newly placed for adoption. Adopters are currently entitled to up to 26 weeks’ ordinary adoption leave followed by up to 26 weeks’ additional adoption leave. Most adopters will be entitled to statutory adoption pay (SAP) during part of their adoption leave. SAP is payable for up to 39 weeks. The right to adoption leave generally arises only with the adoption of a new child into the family and not, for example, where a step-parent adopts a child for whom they have already been caring.

Taking adoption leave

Adopters can choose to start their leave from the date of the child’s placement or from a fixed date which can be up to 14 days before the expected date of placement. Adopters are required to inform you of their intention to take adoption leave within seven days of being notified by their adoption agency that they have been matched with a child, unless this is not reasonably practicable, in which case notice must be given as soon as is reasonably practicable. They need to tell you when the child is expected to be placed with them and when they want their adoption leave to start. The Adoption Leave Request Form can be used to request the required information. Employees are able to change their mind about the date on which they want their adoption leave to start providing that they tell you at least 28 days in advance. Employees have to give you a matching certificate from the adoption agency as evidence of their entitlement to adoption leave and SAP.