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Shared Parental Leave and Pay

Article ID


Article Name

Shared Parental Leave and Pay

Created Date

27th November 2019


IRIS PAYE-Master, IRIS Payroll Business, IRIS Bureau Payroll, IRIS GP Payroll, IRIS Payroll Professional, Earnie, IRIS Earnie IQ


Overview of Shared Parental Leave and Pay - new legislation from April 2015


Information provided by


Employees may be entitled to Shared Parental Leave (SPL) and Statutory Shared Parental Pay (ShPP) if:

  • their baby is due on or after 5 April 2015
  • they adopt a child on or after 5 April 2015

Employees can start SPL if they’re eligible and they or their partner end their maternity or adoption leave or pay early. The remaining leave will be available as SPL. The remaining pay may be available as ShPP. The same as SMP, total leave is 52 weeks and total pay is 39 weeks.

Employees can take SPL in up to 3 separate blocks. They can also share the leave with their partner if they’re also eligible. Parents can choose how much of the SPL each of them will take.

SPL and ShPP must be taken between the baby’s birth and first birthday (or within 1 year of adoption).


Sometimes only one parent in a couple will be eligible to get Shared Parental Leave (SPL) and Statutory Shared Parental Pay (ShPP). This means that they can’t share the leave.

If your employee is eligible then they can use SPL to book their leave in separate blocks.

Shared Parental Leave

To qualify for SPL, the child’s mother (or adoptive parent) must be eligible for either:

  • Maternity leave or pay
  • Maternity Allowance
  • Adoption leave or pay

Your employee must also:

  • Have worked for you continuously for at least 26 weeks by the end of the 15th week before the due date (or date they are matched with their adopted child)

  • Still be employed by you while they take SPL

  • Give you the correct notice including a declaration that their partner meets the employment and income requirements which allow your employee to get SPL

Statutory Shared Parental Pay

Your employee can get ShPP if one of the following applies:

  • they qualify for Statutory Maternity Pay or Statutory Adoption Pay
  • they qualify for Statutory Paternity Pay and have a partner who qualifies for Statutory Maternity Pay or Maternity Allowance or Statutory Adoption Pay

Refusing SPL or ShPP

You can refuse SPL or ShPP if the employee doesn’t qualify.

You must tell the employee the reason if you refuse ShPP. You don’t have to give a reason for refusing SPL.


If an employee is eligible and they or their partner end maternity or adoption leave and pay (or Maternity Allowance) early, then they can:

  • Take the rest of the 52 weeks of leave (up to a maximum of 50 weeks) as Shared Parental Leave (SPL)
  • Take the rest of the 39 weeks of pay (up to a maximum of 37 weeks) as Statutory Shared Parental Pay (ShPP)

A mother must take a minimum of 2 weeks’ maternity leave following the birth (4 if she works in a factory).

ShPP is paid at the rate of £148.68 (19/20 tax year) a week or 90% of an employee’s average weekly earnings, whichever is lower.

Information needed to setup ShPP

You will require the following information to configure ShPP:

  • Start Date of Leave
  • End Date of Leave
  • Number of ShPP weeks to pay
  • Partner’s Surname
  • Partner’s Forename
  • Partner’s NI Number

Record keeping

You must keep records for HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), including:

  • the evidence provided by the employee to show that they’re eligible for ShPP
  • the date ShPP began
  • your ShPP payments (including dates)
  • the ShPP you’ve reclaimed
  • any weeks you didn’t pay and why

You must keep records for at least 3 years from the end of the tax year they relate to.

For further details please see

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