Paternity leave help!!

Is anyone in the know?! I've tried googling but I've confused myself!

My H works full time. He gets 20 days holiday plus 8 bank holidays (which makes the 28 days min). If his paternity leave falls over Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year's Day (3 bank holidays) should he get 2 weeks + 3 days paternity leave or does he lose out on those 3 bank holidays and only get the 2 weeks?

I hope you understand me!


  • Custard, based on everywhere I've ever worked those days would be available to him to take again, and most likely tagged on the end. I'll have a looksie online...

  • I've read loads of cases where in practice they allow the days to be added, but it seems that isn't a legal obligation. An article says it depends on whether BHs are part of overall balance and how you've worded it suggests they're not, which would mean he doesn't have a right to those extra days. This article is useful:

    I wonder though, if he just takes the attitude that he's entitled to those days, whether he'll get them anyway :)

    Maybe someone else will come up with the definitive answer!

  • It's very confusing isn't it! The HR zone is the best answer I've found. I think he should get his 2 week paternity plus the 3 bank holidays in lieu to be taken later in the year. Now the problem falls that his holidays are jan to December!
  • How rude.... Thank you!!
  • It just occurred to me that we'll probably have this issue with Easter! :)

  • You don't accrue bank holidays when on paternity /maternity leave but you do get full pay for those days. You do accrue annual leave.

  • But what happens if the bank holidays are taken as part of your annual leave?

  • If you take annual leave on Xmas week for example, you'd only use 3 days instead of 5 as Xmas day an boxing day wouldn't count as holiday but bank holiday. You build the annual leave around fixed bank holidays.

    If you were on statutory paternity leave around Xmas, you'd receive full pay for the 2 bank holidays (or 3 including new years day) and be paid statutory minimum or the rest.

  • I think the wording is that if you have total days then you still have those days to take. If it's X days plus bank holidays then you lose them. That's how I read it?

  • That's right counter. So if your contract says 28 annual leave, these would accrue. If it says 20 days annual leave plus 8 days bank holidays, the 20 days accrue and can be taken later but the 8 bank holidays are fixed.

  • Thanks... I think I'm getting my head around this! So he will get 7 days paternity pay and 3 days bank holiday pay? But I thought paternity pay needed to be taken in a chunk of either 1 or 2 full weeks.
  • Thanks LD, I'm straight now.

    Custard, is it that there is a difference between 2 weeks leave and 10 days pay? So he would be having 2 weeks paternity leave. And maybe his employer have this outlined and says he doesn't lose the BHs?

  • His employer is only giving stat pay (tight wad!) so it would be quite a difference in pay if he didn't get paid for them.
  • Paternity leave needs to be taken in a chunk but pay is slightly different and he would get whatever his full time daily rate is for the bank holidays. He should clarify with HR beforehand sp they don't forget to pay him for those days or they might turn around and say just have the 3 additional days if it makes thei payroll easier. If my H hadn't got full paid paternity leave he would have taken annual leave. Whereas I'm only entitled to SMP and the bank holidays are just paid in full.

  • Thank you. He's going to speak to HR today. Apparently he's now saying he *may* get full pay for paternity leave! He works for a law/accounting firm so not an unprofessional business! I think he's just the first person to go on paternity leave while it has existed so they're all a bit confused!
  • It's surprising how many companies aren't au fait with all of this, no policies, no experience etc.

    My husband is going to be asking for extra (unpaid) paternity leave prior to being entitled to it, (the 20 week mark) but mothers are allowed it and gay male parents are allowed it. We're hoping because he works for the home office they'll be the most accomodating of all employers, but we're prepared to be surprised!

    Good luck with his HR dept :)

  • Thanks! It's one of those the more you read the more confused you get! We'll be happy for him to either be given an IOU time in leiu or paid. But for it to just go and get nothing then that's plain mean!
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