Family friendly policy and procedure


This document sets out the Employer’s policy on maternity, adoption, paternity, parental and shared parental leave, flexible working and time off to care for dependents. It is designed to be as comprehensive as possible. However, if you have any queries which are not answered or if you have any other questions about the policy please contact Sharon Smith.

Maternity Leave

Ordinary Maternity Leave
You will be entitled to take 26 weeks’ ordinary maternity leave, no matter how long you have been employed and no matter how many hours you work each week. This period of leave may be paid, subject to the eligibility requirements set out below.

Additional Maternity Leave
You will be entitled to take 26 weeks’ additional maternity leave commencing immediately after your ordinary maternity leave, no matter how long you have been employed and no matter how many hours you work each week. Part of this period of leave may be paid, subject to the eligibility requirements set out below. This will make your total leave period a maximum of 52 weeks.

Starting Maternity Leave
You can choose to start your maternity leave at any time after the start of the 11th week before the week in which your child is due, unless:

    • you are ill for a reason related to your pregnancy at any time after the start of the 4th week before your child is due in which case your maternity leave will automatically start on the first day of your absence; or
    • your child arrives unexpectedly early and before you have started maternity leave in which case your maternity leave will start on the day that your child is born.

Notification Requirements
By the end of the 15th week before the expected week of the birth of your child (or, if that is not reasonably practicable, as soon as possible thereafter) (the Qualifying Week) you must give notice to the Employer of the following:

    • that you are pregnant;
    • the week your baby is expected to be born (note that for these purposes a week begins on a Sunday). You should enclose a Form MAT B1 signed by your GP or midwife with your notice; and
    • the date when you intend starting your maternity leave.

If you wish to change the intended start date of your maternity leave you must notify the Employer at least 28 days before the new start date or, if that is not reasonably practicable, as soon as possible thereafter.

Maternity Pay
If you have at least 26 weeks’ service by the end of the 15th week before your child is born and your average weekly earnings during the eight weeks ending with the Qualifying Week are not less than the lower earnings limit applying to National Insurance contributions (for current rates please ask your Line Manager), you will be entitled to receive SMP whether or not you intend to return to work. If you do not qualify for SMP you may be able to claim state maternity allowance. SMP is payable for a maximum of 39 weeks. You can expect to receive 9/10ths of your average weekly earnings for the first 6 weeks and then whichever is the lower of either the statutory rate (for current rates please ask your Line Manager) or 9/10ths of your average weekly earnings, for the remaining 33-week period. Usually, SMP begins on the day your maternity leave begins.
Your SMP will be paid into your bank account on the same date that you would have received your salary, and will be subject to the usual deductions for tax, National Insurance and pension contributions.

To claim SMP you must notify in writing the Employer of your intention to take maternity leave  28 days before you are due to receive your first payment or, if that is not reasonably practicable, as soon as possible thereafter.

Contractual Benefits
Throughout both your ordinary maternity leave and your additional maternity leave your contract of employment will continue and you will receive the benefits of the terms and conditions of your employment, except the terms relating to pay.

Pension Contributions
The Employer’s pension contributions will continue to be made during the Statutory Maternity Pay Period (i.e. 39 weeks).

Annual Leave
During both your ordinary and additional maternity leave, holiday entitlement will accrue at the rate provided under your contract of employment. Please discuss your holiday plans with your manager in good time before starting your maternity leave. All holiday dates are subject to approval by your manager.

Health and Safety
You are required to notify the Employer as soon as you are aware that you may be pregnant so that the Employer can carry out a risk assessment and fulfil its other health and safety obligations towards you and your unborn child.

Compulsory Leave
You are prohibited from working for a period of two weeks commencing with the day on which your child is born. This is a compulsory legal obligation intended to benefit both you and your new child.

Returning to Work
The Employer will, within 28 days of receiving your notification of the intended start date of your maternity leave , respond to you in writing setting out your expected date of return. If you intend returning to work at the end of your maternity leave you are not required to give any further notification to the Employer. If you wish to return to work before the end of the 52 week maternity leave period then you must give at least 8 weeks’ notice of your earlier e return date. Failure to give this notice may result in the Employer postponing your return to work. If you fail to give the required notice, the Employer may postpone your return to work in the case of an early return to work by up to 8 weeks from the date you gave notice that you intended to return early.
If you wish to return to work later than you have previously notified the Employer you must give the Employer notice of the new later date of return at least 8 weeks before the date you had previously agreed.
Following ordinary maternity leave you will have the right to return to work in the same job that you left before you started your maternity leave with your seniority, pension rights and similar rights as they would have been had you not been absent.
Following additional maternity leave you will have the right to return to the same job you left before your absence, or, if it is not reasonably practicable to permit you to return to the same job,  we may give you another suitable and appropriate job on terms and conditions that are not less favourable.

Notice required if not returning to work
If you decide not to return to work at the end of your maternity leave you must give the Employer at least the notice required by your contract of employment. This does not affect your right to receive SMP.

Contact during maternity leave
Reasonable contact between you and the Employer is encouraged to facilitate communication. Either party is entitled to initiate this during the maternity period (for example to discuss your return to work or potential work related issues that may concern you) and such contact will not bring the maternity period to an end.

Keeping in Touch Days (‘KIT days’)
KIT days enable you to do up to 10 days work, during maternity leave, without bringing your maternity leave or maternity pay to an end. Work means any work done under the contract of employment and may include training, attending meetings and committees or any activity undertaken for the purposes of keeping in touch with the workplace. Any work carried out on any day, even if only for part of a day, will use a whole KIT day from the 10 available.
This provision does not confer any right on the Employer to require any work to be carried out during the statutory maternity leave period, nor any right for you be provided with work during this period. Also, there is no obligation on either you or the Employer to make use of the KIT days. Any days’ work carried out will not have the effect of extending the total statutory maternity leave period.
You will be paid your normal hourly rate for any hours worked on KIT days. Tax and National Insurance will be deducted in the usual way. Any pay received will be inclusive of any maternity pay entitlement.
This provision does not apply during the two week period commencing on and including the day on which childbirth occurs

Maternity Appointments
All pregnant employees, irrespective of length of service, are entitled to paid time off work to keep appointments for antenatal care prescribed by a doctor, midwife or health visitor. Antenatal care includes appointments with GPs, hospital clinics and relaxation classes that a medical professional has advised you to attend. Wherever possible, appointments should be arranged at the beginning or end of the working day. Unless it is the first appointment, evidence of appointments and a certificate from the doctor, midwife or health visitor, stating that you are pregnant, may be requested.

Time off for Antenatal Appointments

Time Off If You Are Pregnant
If you are pregnant you may take reasonable paid time off during working hours for antenatal appointments. This may include any relaxation or parenting classes that your doctor, midwife or health visitor has advised you to attend.

Please try to give the Employer as much notice as possible of the appointment. We may ask you to provide the following, unless it is the first appointment:

(a)     a certificate from the doctor, midwife or health visitor stating that you are pregnant; and
(b)     an appointment card.

Time Off For Accompanying A Pregnant Woman
You may take unpaid time off to accompany a pregnant woman to an antenatal appointment if you have a “qualifying relationship” with the woman or the child. This means that either:

    • you are the baby’s father;
    • you are the pregnant woman’s spouse, civil partner or cohabiting partner (or are living with her in an enduring family relationship and she is not your sister, mother, grandmother, aunt or niece);
    • she has undergone assisted conception and at that time you were her wife or civil partner or gave the required legal notices to be treated in law as the second female parent; or
    • you are one of the intended parents in a surrogacy arrangement and expect to obtain a parental order in respect of the child.

Please give the Employer as much notice of the appointment as possible. Please provide us with a signed statement providing the date and time of the appointment and confirming:

    • that you meet one of the eligibility criteria in the paragraph above;
    • that the purpose of the time off is to accompany the pregnant woman to an antenatal appointment; and
    • that the appointment has been made on the advice of a registered medical practitioner, registered midwife or registered nurse.

You are entitled to attend a maximum of two appointments of up to 6.5 hours each, which includes travel and waiting time. Further time off for antenatal appointments is in the Employer’s absolute discretion.

IVF Treatment

Employees undergoing IVF treatment are expected to use their annual leave for time off to undergo procedures prior to implantation. If they are made unwell by the procedures, they will need to take sick leave in accordance with the Employer’s sickness policy. As soon as implantation occurs they have the rights of any pregnant woman and will be treated accordingly. As these are all sensitive matters which an employee may not wish to have made public, you may prefer to deal solely with your Line Manager who will ensure matters are dealt with in strict confidence.

    1. Adoption Leave

Adoption leave, to a large extent mirrors, maternity leave. The main difference is that adoption leave is available to both men and women (although where a couple adopts a child, only one parent will be able to take adoption leave). If you would like further information or you have any questions about Adoption Leave please contact your Line Manager.

    1. Paternity leave

Entitlement to take Paternity Leave
Paternity leave is available to employees of either gender, for the purpose of caring for a child or supporting the child’s other parent provided:

    • you have at least 26 weeks’ continuous employment by the end of the 15th week before the expected week of the birth of your child; and
    • you are the father of the child and have responsibility for bringing up the child; or
    • you are married to, or the partner of, the child’s mother and you expect to have the main responsibility with the mother for bringing up the child.

Extent of Paternity Leave entitlement
You are entitled to take up to 2 weeks’ paternity leave which must be taken either as a single block of one week or two consecutive weeks. It cannot be taken in instalments.
This period of leave may be paid, subject to the eligibility requirements set out below.  Your leave period will be calculated on a “rolling week” basis. This means that if you start your leave on, for example, a Tuesday, the leave period will run to the Monday.
The leave must be taken within a period of 56 days beginning with either the child’s birth date, or the first day of the expected week of its birth. The latter option is designed to help you if the child is born very prematurely and remains in hospital throughout the first 56 days or longer.

Notification Requirements
You must give to the Employer notice of your intention to take paternity leave by the end of the 15th week before the expected week of the child’s birth, or, if this is not reasonably practicable, as soon as is reasonably practicable. You must specify:

    • the expected week of the child’s birth;
    • the length of period of leave (e.g. one week or two weeks’ leave) that you have chosen to take; and
    • the date you have chosen for your leave to start.

You may also be required, if the Employer requests it, to provide a declaration that you satisfy the eligibility requirements set out above.

Paternity Pay
If you have at least 26 weeks’ service by the end of the 15th week before your child is born and your normal weekly earnings are not less than the lower earnings limit applying to National Insurance contributions (for current rates please ask your Line Manager), you will be entitled to receive statutory paternity pay (SPP). SPP is payable for a maximum of 2 weeks. The rate of SPP will be the lower of either the statutory rate (for current rates please ask your Line Manager) or 9/10ths of your average weekly earnings. It will be paid into your bank account subject to the usual deductions for tax, National Insurance and pension contributions.
To claim SPP you must give notice in writing to the Employer at least 28 days before the date from which you expect to start your paternity leave. This notice is quite separate from the notice you are required to give of your intention to take paternity leave.

Contractual Rights
During the paternity leave period you will continue to be entitled to the benefit of all of the terms and conditions of your employment except those relating to salary.
Annual leave entitlement under your contract shall continue to accrue and pension benefits shall continue.
For the avoidance of any doubt, you will continue to be bound by those duties arising under your contract of employment which are not inconsistent with your right to be absent from work on paternity leave (e.g. the duties of confidentiality and good faith which you owe to the Employer).

Returning to Work
Following paternity leave you will have the right to return to the job you were doing before taking the leave, and to the same conditions. You will not be subjected to any detriment or dismissal because you have taken, or sought to take, paternity leave.

Paternity Leave and Adoption
If you are adopting a child, you may take paternity leave, whether you are a man or a woman, provided you are not the primary carer and have not elected to take adoption leave. Please contact the Employer for details of eligibility requirements.

    • Parental Leave

Entitlement to parental leave
Parental leave may only be taken for the purposes of caring for your child. All periods of parental leave are unpaid and your contractual provisions relating to pay and benefits are suspended during parental leave. To qualify for parental leave you must have 1 year’s continuous service with the Employer at the beginning of the requested leave period. To be eligible for parental leave you must:

    • be a parent named on the birth certificate of a child; or
    • be the child’s adoptive parent; or
    • have acquired formal legal parental responsibility for a child.

You will not be subjected to a detriment for taking or seeking to take parental leave in accordance with this policy.

Taking parental leave
Parental leave must be taken before the child’s 18th birthday.

Where an employee takes a period of parental leave under this policy for purposes other than spending time with or otherwise caring for their child, this will be dealt with as a disciplinary issue under our Disciplinary Procedure.

Disabled children
Where disability living allowance or personal independence payment  is awarded in respect of your child, your parental leave entitlement may be taken on a daily or weekly basis.  However, there is still a limit of four weeks a year for each child and 18 weeks in total for each child.

For the purposes of this policy, a disabled child means a child who is entitled to a disability living allowance, armed forces independence allowance or personal independence payment.

Duration of parental leave
Parental leave can be taken for a maximum of 18 weeks for each child. You may take parental leave in blocks of one week. You may not take more than 4 weeks in any year in relation to each child. A year for this purpose begins on the date when you became entitled to take parental leave in relation to the child in question. If you are permitted to take leave in blocks of one week but you actually take leave for shorter period (e.g. one or two days) that will constitute a week’s leave for the purposes of calculating your 18 weeks’ leave entitlement although you will continue to be paid as normal for the time you work. Employees working part-time or variable hours have an entitlement to 18 weeks’ leave but a week’s leave for these purposes is the average hours worked in a week.

Any parental leave taken while working for another employer counts towards the 18-week entitlement. If you have taken parental leave during previous or concurrent employment, you should provide details to your Line Manager.

 Notification Requirements
You should notify the Employer of the dates when you wish your parental leave to start and end, at least 21 days in advance in order to account for unpaid leave on the payroll. If you wish to take parental leave immediately on the birth or adoption of a child you must request parental leave in the normal way and, in addition, give the Employer 21 days’ notice of the expected week of the birth or adoption of the child and the duration of the period of leave required.

At the time of requesting parental leave, you should:

    • provide the name of your child, stating his/her date of birth or adoption placement and your relationship to him/her;
    • produce an appropriate birth or adoption certificate, parental responsibility agreement or court order;
    • produce evidence of your child’s entitlement to a disability living allowance or personal independence payment;
    • complete the absence request form and specify parental leave as the reason for absence; and
    • declare any periods of parental leave you have taken with a previous employer.

Postponing parental leave
The Employer reserves the right to postpone parental leave where the needs of the business make this necessary. The Employer will attempt to agree with you a suitable alternative date when the parental leave can commence. The leave will not be postponed to a date later than 6 months from the original date requested. If the Employer deems it necessary to postpone parental leave you will be notified in writing within 7 days of receipt of your request for parental leave. You will be given the reason for the postponement and the alternative dates on which parental leave can be taken. The Employer will not postpone leave if you wish your parental leave to start immediately on the birth or adoption of a child providing you give the notice above or if the postponement would result in the leave being taken after the child’s 18th birthday.

Contractual Rights
During parental leave your contract of employment will remain in force, and holiday entitlement will continue to accrue. You will remain bound by your duties of good faith and confidentiality, and all other contractual terms.  For the avoidance of any doubt, parental leave is unpaid.

Pensions
If you are a member of a defined contribution (money purchase) pension scheme, we shall not make contributions during a period of unpaid parental leave.

Shared Parental Leave (Birth)

About this policy
This policy outlines the arrangements for shared parental leave and pay in relation to the birth of a child. If you are adopting a child please see the Shared Parental Leave (Adoption) Policy instead.
This policy applies to employees. It does not apply to agency workers or self-employed contractors.
This policy does not form part of any employee’s contract of employment and we may amend it at any time.

Frequently Used Terms
The definitions in this paragraph apply in this policy.
Expected week of childbirth (EWC): the week, beginning on a Sunday, in which the doctor or midwife expects your child to be born.
Parent: One of two people who will share the main responsibility for the child’s upbringing (and who may be either the mother, the father, or the mother’s partner if not the father).
Partner: spouse, civil partner or someone living with another person in an enduring family relationship, but not a sibling, child, parent, grandparent, grandchild, aunt, uncle, niece or nephew.
Qualifying Week: the fifteenth week before the expected week of childbirth.

What is Shared Parental Leave?
Shared parental leave (SPL) is a form of leave available to working parents following the birth of a child. It applies in respect of children who are expected to be born on or after 5 April 2015.
SPL allows parents to take up to 52 weeks leave in total on the birth of a child. They may be able to take this leave at the same time or at different times.

Entitlement to SPL
You are entitled to SPL in relation to the birth of a child if:

    • you are the child’s mother, and share the main responsibility for the care of the child with the child’s father or with your partner;
    • you are the child’s father and share the main responsibility for the care of the child with the child’s mother; or
    • you are the mother’s partner and share the main responsibility for the care of the child with the mother (where the child’s father does not share the main responsibility with the mother).

The following conditions must also be fulfilled:

    • you must have at least 26 weeks continuous employment with us by the end of the Qualifying Week, and still be employed by us in the week before the leave is to be taken;
    • the other parent must have worked (in an employed or self-employed capacity) in at least 26 of the 66 weeks before the EWC and had average weekly earnings of at least £30 during 13 of those weeks; and
    • you and the other parent must give the necessary statutory notices and declarations as summarised below, including notice to end any maternity leave, statutory maternity pay (SMP) or maternity allowance (MA) periods.

The total amount of SPL available is 52 weeks, less the weeks spent by the child’s mother on maternity leave (or the weeks in which the mother has been in receipt of SMP or MA if she is not entitled to maternity leave).
If you are the child’s father or mother’s partner, you should consider using your two weeks’ paternity leave before taking SPL. Once you start SPL, you will lose any untaken paternity leave entitlement. SPL is additional to the statutory right to two weeks’ paternity leave.

Opting in to Shared Parental Leave and Pay
SPL cannot start until at least two weeks after the child is born.
Not less than eight weeks before the date you intend your SPL to start, you must give us a written opt-in notice giving:

    • your name and the name of the other parent;
    • if you are the child’s mother, the start and end dates of your maternity leave;
    • if you are the child’s father or the mother’s partner, the start and end dates of the mother’s maternity leave, or if she is not entitled to maternity leave, the start and end dates of any SMP or MA period;
    • the total SPL available, which is 52 weeks minus the number of weeks’ maternity leave, SMP or MA period taken or to be taken;
    • how much of that will be allocated to you and how much to the other parent. (You can change the allocation by giving us a further written notice, and you do not have to use your full allocation);
    • if you are claiming statutory shared parental pay (ShPP), the total ShPP available, which is 39 weeks minus the number of weeks of the SMP or MA period taken or to be taken);
    • how many weeks of the ShPP will be allocated to you and how much to the other parent. (You can change the allocation by giving us a further written notice, and you do not have to use your full allocation);
    • an indication of the pattern of leave you are thinking of taking, including suggested start and end dates for each period of leave. This indication will not be binding at this stage, but please give as much information as you can about your future intentions; and
    • declarations by you and the other parent that you meet the statutory conditions for entitlement to SPL and ShPP.

Ending Maternity Leave
If you are the child’s mother and are still on maternity leave, you must give us at least eight weeks’ written notice to end your maternity leave (a curtailment notice) before you can take SPL. The notice must state the date your maternity leave will end. You can give the notice before or after you give birth, but you cannot end your maternity leave until at least two weeks after birth.
You must also give us, at the same time as the curtailment notice, a notice to opt into the SPL scheme (see above) or a written declaration that the child’s father or your partner has given his or her employer an opt-in notice and that you have given the necessary declarations in that notice.
The other parent may be eligible to take SPL from their employer before your maternity leave ends, provided you have given the curtailment notice.
The curtailment notice is usually binding and cannot be revoked. You can only revoke a curtailment notice if maternity leave has not yet ended and one of the following applies:

    • if you realise that neither you nor the other parent are in fact eligible for SPL or ShPP, you can revoke the curtailment notice in writing up to eight weeks after it was given;
    • if you gave the curtailment notice before giving birth, you can revoke it in writing up to eight weeks after it was given, or up to six weeks after birth, whichever is later; or
    • if the other parent has died.

Once you revoke a curtailment notice you cannot submit a second curtailment notice, unless the revocation was given in the in circumstances in the above paragraphs.
If you are the child’s father or the mother’s partner, you will only be able to take SPL either once the mother  has returned to work or she has given one of the following notices:

    • a curtailment notice to her employer to end maternity leave;
    • if she is not entitled to maternity leave but is entitled to SMP, a curtailment notice to end her SMP; or
    • if she is not entitled to maternity leave or SMP, a curtailment notice to the benefits office to end her MA.

Evidence of Entitlement
You must also provide on request:
A copy of the birth certificate (or if you have not yet obtained a birth certificate, a signed declaration of the child’s date and place of birth);
and the name and address of the other parent’s employer (or a declaration that they have no employer).

Notifying us of your SPL dates
Having opted into the SPL system you will need to give a period of leave notice telling us the start and end dates of your leave. This can be given at the same time as your opt-in notice, or it can be given later, as long as it is given at least eight weeks before the start of your leave. You must also state in your period of leave notice the dates on which you intend to claim shared parental pay, if applicable.
If your period of leave notice gives dates for a single continuous block of SPL you will be entitled to take the leave set out in the notice. Leave must be taken in blocks of at least one week.
You can give up to three period of leave notices. This may enable you to take up to three separate blocks of shared parental leave.

Procedure for requesting SPLIT periods of SPL
In general, a period of leave notice should set out a single continuous block of leave. We may, in some cases, be willing to consider a period of leave notice where the SPL is split into shorter periods (of at least a week) with periods of work in between. It is best to discuss this with your manager and HR in advance of submitting any formal period of leave notices. This will give us more time to consider the request and hopefully agree a pattern of leave with you from the start.
You must submit a period of leave notice setting out the requested pattern of leave at least eight weeks before the requested start date. If we are unable to agree to your request straight away, there will be a two-week discussion period. At the end of that period, we will confirm any agreed arrangements in writing. If we have not reached an agreement, you will be entitled to take the full amount of requested SPL as one continuous block, starting on the start date given in your notice (for example, if you requested three separate periods of four weeks each, you will be entitled to one 12-week period of leave). Alternatively, you may:

    • choose a new start date (which must be at least eight weeks after your original period of leave notice was given), and tell us within five days of the end of the two-week discussion period; or
    • withdraw your period of leave notice within two days of the end of the two-week discussion period (in which case it will not be counted and you may submit a new one if you choose).

Changing the dates or cancelling your SPL
You can cancel a period of leave by notifying us in writing at least eight weeks before the start date in the period of leave notice.
You can change the dates for a period of leave by giving us at least eight weeks’ notice before the original start date and the new start date.
You do not need to give eight weeks’ notice if you are changing the dates of your SPL because your child has been born earlier than the EWC, where you wanted to start your SPL a certain length of time (but not more than eight weeks) after birth. In such cases please notify us in writing of the change as soon as you can.
A notice to cancel or change a period of leave will count as one of your three period of leave notices, unless:

    • the variation is a result of your child being born earlier or later than the EWC;
    • the variation is at our request; or
    • we agree otherwise.

Shared Parental Pay
ShPP of up to 39 weeks (less any weeks of statutory maternity pay or adoption pay claimed by you or the other parent) may be available provided you have at least 26 weeks’ continuous employment with us at the end of the Qualifying Week and your average earnings are not less than the lower earnings limit in force for national insurance contributions set by the government each tax year for the period of eight weeks leading up to and including the 15th week before the child’s expected due/matching date.  ShPP is paid at a rate set by the government each year.

Other terms during Shared Parental Leave
Your terms and conditions of employment remain in force during SPL, except for the terms relating to pay.
Annual leave entitlement will continue to accrue at the rate provided under your contract. If your SPL will continue into the next holiday year, any holiday entitlement that cannot reasonably be taken before starting your leave can be carried over. Please discuss your holiday plans with your manager in good time before starting SPL. All holiday dates are subject to approval by your manager.
If you are a member of the pension scheme, we will make employer pension contributions during any period of paid SPL, based on your normal salary, in accordance with the pension scheme rules. Any employee contributions you make will be based on the amount of any shared parental pay you are receiving, unless you inform the Human Resources Department or the Pensions Administrator that you wish to make up any shortfall.

Shared Parental Leave in Touch (SPLIT)
We may make reasonable contact with you from time to time during your SPL although we will keep this to a minimum. This may include contacting you to discuss arrangements for your return to work.
You may ask or be asked to work (including attending training) on up to 20 “shared parental leave-in-touch” days (SPLIT days) during your SPL. This is in addition to any “Keeping in touch” (KIT) days that you may have taken during maternity leave. SPLIT days are not compulsory and must be discussed and agreed with your line manager.
You will be paid at your normal basic rate of pay for time spent working on a SPLIT day and this will be inclusive of any shared parental pay entitlement.

Returning to work
If you want to end a period of SPL early, you must give us eight weeks’ prior notice of the return date. It is helpful if you give this notice in writing.
If you want to extend your SPL you must submit a new period of leave notice at least eight weeks before the date you were due to return to work, assuming you still have SPL entitlement remaining and have not already submitted three period of leave notices. If you are unable to request more SPL you may be able to request annual leave or ordinary parental leave, which will be subject to business need.
You are normally entitled to return to work in the position you held before starting SPL, and on the same terms of employment. However, if you have taken more than 26 weeks of SPL in total, or a period of SPL in combination with more than four weeks of ordinary parental leave (under our Parental Leave Policy), and it is not reasonably practicable for us to allow you to return into the same position, we may give you another suitable and appropriate job on terms and conditions that are not less favourable.
If you want to change your hours or other working arrangements on return from SPL you should make a request under our Flexible Working Policy. It is helpful if such requests are made as early as possible.
If you decide you do not want to return to work you should give notice of resignation in accordance with your contract.

Shared Parental Leave (Adoption)

About this Policy
Shared Parental Leave (Adoption), to a large extent mirrors, Shared Parental Leave (Birth). The new system will allow adoptive parents to share the adoption leave and pay currently only available to the primary adopter under Adoption Leave. If you would like further information or you have any questions about Adoption Leave please contact your Line Manager.