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THE WOMEN IN BUSINESS TOOLKIT: Adoption Leave and Pay


THE WOMEN IN BUSINESS TOOLKIT All of the Chapters so the Women in Business Toolkit can be found online on the Women in Business Toolkit section of the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce Website along with an online version of this document. Click the links below or see www.Birmingham-Chamber.com/WIBToolkit for more information.

Having a family and caring for dependents

Promoting Best Practice Mentoring and Sponsorship

Maternity Leave and Pay

Unconscious Bias Training

Paternity Leave and Pay

Transparency in Pay and Promotions

Adoption Leave and Pay Shared Parental Leave and Pay The Right to Request Flexible Working

Promoting Diversity Through Recruitment Flexible Working

Statutory Parental Leave

Diversity Policies and Strategies

Your Rights in the Workplace

Making the Case

Discrimination, Informal and Formal Grievances and The Equality Act (2010)

Making the Case: How to Construct a Business Case and Useful Statistics

Taking a Case to Employment Tribunal


INTRODUCTION: This handy little guide offers you some concise and, we hope, highly practical and useful information on the Right to Adoption Leave and Pay. It also includes and introduction to some best practice activities; Keeping in Touch Days and Occupational Adoption Pay. Advice on making the case for your employer offering KIT Days and Occupational Adoptive Pay can be found in the Making the Case chapter of the toolkit available on the Chamber Website www.BirminghamChamber.com/WIBToolkit. If you like the sound of KIT days or OAP you can use the information in these documents to support you in making the case for your employer offering them.

Connecting you to opportunity... This guide, brought to you by the Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce, is part of the Women in Business Toolkit. This toolkit aims to help inform and empower women and encourage best practice in businesses, helping make the UK a forward thinking, attractive place to work. Whilst useful and informative, it does not aim to provide encyclopaedic knowledge or in-depth legal advice about the topics in question, merely an introductory account. If you have any questions about any of the topics covered in this document please do speak to your HR department/the member of staff responsible for this area or seek professional advice The Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce features some of the UK’s oldest and largest Chambers. It has nearly 3,000 member companies that employ over 200,000 plus affiliate organisations representing 15,000 people. It offers extensive services to industry and commerce, having served the interests of business for nearly three centuries, promoting trade locally, nationally and internationally.


Did you know? Adoption leave was first introduced in the UK in 2003

CHILDREN Were adopted in England in 2012

Around the world... Did you know? Your employment rights are protected while you are on adoption leave. This includes your rights to:

pay rises

accrue holiday

WEEKS

Outside of the UK, Adoptive parents are also eligible for leave benefits in :

The maximum amount of adoption leave in the UK

Canada

Sweden

France

The average age of children adopted in England is 3 years 8months.


WHAT IS STATUTORY ADOPTION LEAVE? If you are adopting a child you could be entitled to Statutory Adoption Leave (SAL). You can have up to 52 weeks of statutory adoption leave, made up of: 

26 weeks of Ordinary Adoption Leave



26 weeks of Additional Adoption Leave

Parents taking Ordinary Adoption Leave (the first 26 weeks of leave) have the right to return to the same job. Parents taking Additional Adoption Leave (between 27 and 52 weeks of leave) have the right to return to the same or a similar job. If you are adopting a child from the UK you can start taking Adoption Leave up to 14 days before the placement begins and the child starts living with you. If you are adopting from overseas you can start taking Adoption Leave as soon as the child arrives in the UK, or within 28 days of this date. Once you start taking your leave you must take it all in one block.

REMEMBER: Only one person in a couple can take adoption leave. This person is known as the primary adopter. The other partner may qualify for Paternity Leave and Pay instead (Click Here)


AM I ELIGIBLE? In order to be eligible for Statutory Adoption Leave you must:

1. have worked continuously for your employer for at least 26 weeks by the date you are matched with a child

2. give correct notice 3. give proof of adoption 4. be an employee If you are required to work regularly, expected to do a minimum number of hours and have National Insurance contributions deducted from your wages, odds are you are an employee. Most people in formal employment are employees however there are other forms of employment status such as ‘workers’ (contracted to do specific pieces of work) who may not be entitled to formal maternity leave and pay. Check your employment contract or ask your HR department/the member of staff responsible for managing contracts in your company, if you are unsure. You do not have to provide proof of adoption for Statutory Adoption Leave unless your employer asks for it.


KEY DATES 7 DAYS If you want to take Statutory Adoption Leave you need to tell your employer within 7 Days of being matched with a child, or becoming aware of the date the child will arrive in the UK. You will need to tell them how much leave you would like, when you want to start and the date the child is due to be placed with you. It is best to do this in writing. Your employer then has 28 days to respond, confirming your leave arrangements.

28 DAYS If the date of the placement, or the date the child is due to arrive in the UK, changes you must inform your employer within 28 days.

8 WEEKS If you want to change the date you are due to return to work you must give your employer at least 8 weeks notice.


WHAT IS STATUTORY ADOPTION PAY? Statutory Adoption Pay (SAP) is the minimum amount that your employer has to pay you whilst you are on Statutory Adoption Leave. As long as you are eligible you can receive: 

Up to 39 weeks of pay at £136.78 (statutory minimum as of November 2013) or 90% of salary if lower

This should be paid in the same way as your wages. Provided you qualify and have given the correct notice, your Statutory Adoption Pay should start arriving automatically when you begin your leave. If it doesn’t contact your HR department or the member of staff in your organisation responsible for this area. Your employer can claim back up to 100% of the costs of Statutory Adoption Pay from the Government. Your employer may also offer additional Adoption Pay known as Occupational Adoption Pay. Check your employment contract or speak to your HR department/member of staff responsible for this area to find out if you are entitled to it. Remember: OAP often comes with terms and conditions that you will need to stick to in order to receive it. If you are not entitled to OAP and would like to propose that your organisation begins to offer it Click Here or see www.birminghamchamber.com/WIBToolkit for advice on making the business case for Occupational Pay.


AM I ELIGIBLE? The eligibility criteria for Statutory Adoption Pay is largely the same as for Statutory Adoption Leave. The only difference is that you must provide proof of adoption to access SAP. Your proof of adoption should include: 

Your name and address

The name and address of the adoption agency

The match date (for instance, your matching certificate)

The date of the placement (for instance, a letter form the agency)

For overseas adoptions you will also need: 

The relevant UK authority’s ‘official notification’ confirming that you are allowed to adopt

The date the child arrived in the UK (for instance, a plane ticket)

DID YOU KNOW: Parents on Statutory Adoption Leave can take up to 10 Keeping in Touch Days. Click Here or see www.birminghamchamber.com/WIBToolkit for more information.


KEY DATES

28 DAYS If you want to take Statutory Adoption Pay you must give your employer 28 days notice. You will need to tell them how much pay you would like to take and the start and end dates.

28 DAYS Your employer then has 28 days to respond and confirm your Statutory Adoption Pay arrangements.

7 DAYS If your employer decides that you are not eligible for Statutory Adoption Pay they must send you a SAP1 form within 7 days of making their decision to explain why.


JARGON BUSTER: ADDITIONAL ADOPTION LEAVE (AAL) Weeks 27-52 of Statutory Adoption Leave. MATCHING WEEK The matching week applies to parents adopting a child only. It means either the end of the week in which you are matched with a child (if you are adopting in the UK) or, for overseas adoption, the date the child you are adopting enters the UK and you would like your adoption pay to start. OCCUPATIONAL ADOPTION PAY Any additional adoption pay offered by your employer above the statutory minimum. Your employer cannot claim back these additional costs from the Government. ORDINARY ADOPTION LEAVE (OAL) Weeks 1-26 of Statutory Adoption Leave. SAP1 FORM The form your employer has to give you if they reject your request for Statutory Adoption Pay. In it they should explain their reasons for rejecting your request. STATUTORY ADOPTION PAY The legal minimum that your employer has to pay you while you are on adoption leave. Your employer can claim back between 92% and 100% (dependant on company size) of this from the Government, by deducting it from National Insurance contributions.


USEFUL LINKS: The UK Government’s Website: https://www.gov.uk/adoption-pay-leave/overview The adoption leave and pay section of the UK government’s website provides more useful, introductory information on adoption leave and pay and signposting for further information. You can also search ‘adoption leave’ on the gov.uk search engine for more helpful advice. Gov.UK Statutory Adoption Leave and Pay Employer Guide: https://www.gov.uk/employers-adoption-pay-leave/entitlement This link will direct you to the gov.uk employers guide to adoption pay and leave. If your employer is unfamiliar with adoption leave and pay they may find this guide useful. The Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) Website: http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/helpsheets/e16.pdf This link will take you to the HMRC ‘Employer Helpbook for Statutory Adoption Pay’. If your employer is unfamiliar with the ins and outs of adoption pay they may find this useful. The Equality and Human Rights Commission Website (EHRC): http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/advice-and-guidance/guidance-for -employers/working-hours-flexible-working-and-time-off/making-adecision-relating-to-time-off/maternity-paternity-adoption-and-parentalleave/ The maternity, paternity, adoption and parental leave section of the EHRC website offers an array of advice and guidance on the Rights of parents.


SOURCE OF STATISTICS


Did you know? Adoption leave was first introduced in 2003

CHILDREN Were adopted in England in 2012

DiversityToolkit.org.uk (2013) Adoption Leave *Online+ *Accessed 07 August 2013+

Adoption UK (2013) Adoption Facts and Figures [Online] [Accessed 24 July 2013]

Around the world... Did you know? Your employment rights are protected while you are on adoption leave. This includes your rights to:

pay rises

accrue holiday

Outside of the UK, Adoptive parents are also eligible for leave benefits in :

Gov.UK (2013) Adoption Leave and Pay [Online] [Accessed 24 July 2013]

WEEKS

The maximum amount of adoption leave in the UK

Gov.UK (2013) Maternity Leave and Pay [Online]

Canada

Sweden

France

Women and Tech (2013) Paid Maternity Leave Infographic, [Online] [Accessed 07 August 2013]

The average age of children adopted in England is 3 years 8months. Adoption UK (2013) Adoption Facts and Figures [Online] [Accessed 24 July 2013]


THE WOMEN IN BUSINESS TOOLKIT: WE NEED YOU

We want to make sure that the Women in Business Toolkit stays as up to date and relevant as possible. To do this we need your support: Are there any chapters that you think are missing? Do you have experience of any of the topics included in the toolkit? Could you offer a case study? If the answer is yes to any of the above please get in touch using the contact details on the back of this document. We look forward to hearing from you.


The Women in Business Toolkit was Developed in Partnership with:

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programmes and funding opportunities. 2. To promote participatory citizenship This is achieved through various communication tools (website, social media, publications, etc.) and by interacting with local and regional stakeholders, multipliers and media. They stimulate debate through the organisation of conferences and events and channel citizens' feedback to the EU. The EDIC will provide a grassroots service tailored to local and regional needs, which will enable the public to obtain information, advice, assistance and answers to questions about the EU, and in particular about the rights of EU citizens, the EU’s priorities (notably the Europe 2020 Growth strategy), legislation, policies, programmes and funding opportunities.

ABOUT EUROPE DIRECT BIRMINGHAM: Europe Direct Birmingham, part of the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce’s international trade team is a network that extends across the twenty-eight member states and is designed to be the authoritative source of information on Europe and EU initiatives from the citizen’s perspective. So rather than deal with Trade and Single Market issues, Europe Direct Birmingham is a mine of information regarding rights, opportunities, freedom of movement and employment, language, culture and all the bits and pieces that make up the individual countries under the European umbrella. Europe Direct has access to a considerable number of publications – hard and soft copies – with particular emphasis on schools, young people and mobility and we encourage and support events and initiatives that engage in Europe-themed activity. For more information call Amerdeep Mangat on 0121 607 0105


FOR MORE INFORMATION: Contact Henrietta Brealey, Policy Advisor Chamber House 75 Harborne Road Birmingham B15 3DH H.Brealey@Birmingham-Chamber.com 0121 607 1786


Women in Business Toolkit: Adoption leave and pay