HRSINGAPORE Community Digest

Paternity Leave

It was announced recently that there are plans to extend Paid Paternity Leave to two weeks with reimbursement from the government.

In the HR Community forum discussions, there are some companies who do provide this while others are in discussions to do so even to foreigners. These are in the trading, electronics and life sciences. Others in construction and finance have expressed the opinion that they would not be able to accommodate an extra week of paternity leave due to work schedules.

There are several prerequisites for Paternity Leave entitlement as listed in the Child Development Co-Savings Act.

These are that the child has to be a Singapore citizen, the father, lawfully married, and the employee should have worked for the company for 3 months continuously before the birth.

The Act also stipulates that one week of paternity leave is equivalent to the number of working days in a week for the father, with a cap of 6 working days weekly. Thus, if he works 5.5 days weekly and the company provides 2 weeks of
Paternity Leave, he would be entitled to 11 working days of Paternity Leave.

Furthermore, the leave can be consumed for 1 or 2 weeks continuously within 16 weeks after the birth. And if both the employer and employee mutually agree, then the leave can be taken within a year of the birth of the child.

It has also been announced that companies who provide a second week of Paternity Leave can recover a sum not exceeding $2500 from the government for children born on or after 01 Jan 15, the second week of Paternity Leave is also applicable to adopted child below one-year-old.

There are plans to legislate the second week of Paternity Leave for fathers effective Jan 1, 2017, increase the period of Shared Parental Leave and Adoption Leave with effect from July 1, 2017.

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