Introduction to this document

Letter postponing parental leave

Use our precedent letter if you need to postpone an employee’s period of parental leave under the rules of the default scheme. However, you can only postpone by up to six months and you can’t postpone at all where an employee wishes to take parental leave immediately after birth or placement for adoption.

Postponement provisions

Under the default provisions in the legislation, you can postpone a period of parental leave for up to six months where the operation of your business would be unduly disrupted if the employee took it at the time requested. You may be justified in postponing the period of leave if, for example, a significant number of your workforce will already be absent at the time, or the period requested is during a time of peak demand at work, or if the employee’s role is such that their absence at that particular time would unduly harm the business. You must confirm the postponement arrangements in writing no later than seven days after the employee’s notice to take leave. Our Letter Postponing Parental Leave will help you here. You must permit the employee to take an equivalent period of leave beginning on a date determined by you after consultation with your employee, but this date must be no later than six months after the period of parental leave originally requested would have begun. Your letter to the employee must state the reason for the postponement and the start and end dates of the proposed new period of parental leave. Note that leave cannot be postponed when an employee gives notice to take it immediately after the time the child is born or placed for adoption.