Adoption leave and pay

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Employees who are adopting a child may be eligible to take statutory adoption leave and receive statutory adoption pay (SAP).

On this page we look at the statutory right to adoption leave and pay in relation to UK adoptions. (The rules differ slightly in relation to adoptions from overseas. We suggest you contact us for specific advice in these circumstances.)

From 5 April 2015, there will be the following changes to statutory adoption leave and pay:

  • Removal of qualifying period of employment to take adoption leave
  • Statutory adoption pay to be increased to 90% of normal earnings for the first 6 weeks of leave
  • Right to attend (and receive pay for) pre-adoption meetings.

In addition, the new right to shared parental leave and pay will be available to eligible parents of adopted children who have a child placed with them for adoption on or after 5 April 2015. For further information, see Shared parental leave and pay.

Also see our Policy - adoption leave (and request form)


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We recommend that you take our advice before using any of the information or documents on this website. You should always seek specific legal advice before taking or refraining from any action. Information and documents on this website are prepared in accordance with the laws of England, Wales and Scotland. Users accessing from Northern Ireland should be aware that different laws and interpretations may be applicable to Northern Ireland.

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