Bonus two weeks of paid parental leave

by Elizabeth Barnard03 Oct 2012

The new Dad and Partner Leave scheme, which comes fully into effect from 1 January 2013, will allow the non-primary carer of new infants access to two weeks of paid-parental leave.

The endeavour, which for the first time will extend the Federal Government’s paid parental leave scheme to the non-primary carers of new infants, was announced by Minister for Families, Jenny Mackin, who also encouraged workers to lodge the correct paperwork in advance of the birth of their baby. She noted that parents can apply up to three months before the expected date of birth or adoption.

Employers are encouraged to advise employees that they may be eligible for two weeks of baby care leave, paid at the minimum wage of about $606 a week. The baby may come from adoption, surrogacy or other arrangements with a birth mother.

The new Dad and Partner Leave scheme complements the already in-place 18 weeks of paid parental leave for the “primary carer” of infants, while the latest endeavour aims to give the non-primary carer a paid fortnight to help with the new arrival. The scheme applies to same-sex couples and heterosexual couples.

The paid leave is namely an opportunity for the self-employed, contractors, and casual workers who generally don't have paternity leave entitlements from an employer to take leave paid leave following the birth of their child.

Key eligibility requirements

  • Eligible parents must have worked 330 hours (an average of just over one day a week) in the preceeding 13 months before the start of their Dad and Partner Pay period, including no more than an eight-week gap between two consecutive working days;
  • The individual must have earned $150,000 or less in the previous financial year; and not be working, or on unpaid leave during the two-week period in which they're helping to care for the child
  • A person can be eligible for Dad and Partner Pay if their partner is not receiving Paid Parental Leave.


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