Paternity Leave: What You Need To Know

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A recent survey conducted by the SMA Baby Club Pregnancy and Baby Fair looked into the recent trends and parenting styles affecting Irish parents today. Following the introduction of the Paternity Leave and?Benefit?Act in 2016, many parents had strong opinions on this. The research highlighted that 21% of parents feel that the recently introduced two-week paternity leave is adequate, yet a staggering 57% of parents would like to see this leave extended to three months. A further one in five parents would like to see paternity leave extended to match that of mothers (six months) so that they can have the same time to bond with their baby and support the mother. Ahead of the?SMA Baby Club Pregnancy and Baby Fair in the RDS this October, here is what else who need to know about paternity leave:?

What benefits fathers are entitled to / how to obtain them

On the 1st September 2016, the government introduced the widely praised Paternity Leave and Benefit Act which entitles new parents (other than the mother of the child) to paternity leave from employment or self-employment following the birth or adoption of a child for the duration of two weeks. These two weeks allow a parent to take two weeks leave at any stage during the six months following birth or adoption (working mothers are currently entitled to 26 weeks maternity leave, with 16 weeks additional unpaid maternity leave optional). Parents may also qualify for paternity benefit from the Department of Social Protection if they have accrued enough PRSI contributions.

The importance of paternity leave

Paternity leave is important for every member of the family as it offers both parents the opportunity to bond with their baby and learn from the beginning, together. The role of mother and father are equally as important to a newborn baby and fathers can now take the opportunity to enjoy this special time with their new arrival. While the mother is entitled to a full six months maternity leave, fathers are entitled to just two weeks, but no matter how long paternity leave is, this allows the opportunity for quality time with your newborn.

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How paternity leave can benefit everyone

It goes without saying that having an extra pair of hands around the house when a newborn arrives is great! The washing mounts up and the night feeds seem endless, so having someone else available to help really is important. While having your new baby at home is an exciting time, the tasks quickly pile up and a new routine needs to be formed - one that your new arrival will most likely dictate! With both mum and dad at home, both parents have the opportunity to share the responsibility equally which not only lessens the burden on one parent over the other, but allows both parents the opportunity to assert their parenting style and bond closer with their baby.


SMA Baby Club Pregnancy & Baby Fair is Ireland's longest running and most respected exhibition for all things baby-related. The hugely successful SMA Baby Club Pregnancy & Baby Fair takes place in Dublin's RDS on October 7th and 8th from 10am to 5pm daily. The event is the only place where parents-to-be can buy, test and try the latest pregnancy and baby products from top brands, and access free pregnancy advice and early childhood parenting tips from a host of experts.??With exclusive access to over 100 retailers and exhibitors, discounts and special offers and fabulous competition prizes, the SMA Baby Club Pregnancy & Baby Fair is guaranteed to be a fun-filled day out for the entire family.? Visit:?www.pregnancyandbabyfair.ie?for more.

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