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Article | Global News Briefs

Netherlands: Extended adoption and paternity/partner leaves being phased in from 2019

April 2, 2019

Netherland’s Additional Birth Leave Act seeks to positively impact women’s opportunities in the labor market and prioritize bonding time for parents and newborns.
Health and Benefits|Wellbeing

Employer Action Code: Act

The Additional Birth Leave Act is intended to positively impact women’s rights and opportunities in the labor market and prioritize bonding time for parents and their newborns. The Act applies to mothers and their partners, including same-sex female families, and as such covers both paternity and partner leave. From the start of this year, partners of new mothers are entitled to a full workweek of leave (rather than the prior two-day entitlement) paid by the employer; from July 2020 they will be able to claim an additional five weeks of paid leave, covered by social security. The Act also provides additional leave for adoptive parents.

Key details

Significant provisions of the Act include the following, effective as of January 1, 2019, unless otherwise noted:

  • Adoption leave for both parents is extended from four to six weeks. Leave must be taken between four weeks prior and 22 weeks after placement of the child in the home. Employees receive a social security benefit of 100% of covered daily earnings.*
  • Employer-paid paternity/partner leave is the equivalent of a full workweek (generally five days), payable at 100% of the employee’s salary. Leave must be taken within four weeks of the child’s birth.
  • As of July 1, 2020, social security will provide five weeks of paternity/partner leave, payable at 70% of covered daily earnings,* to be taken after employer-paid leave ends. Leave must be taken within six months of the child’s birth.

Employer implications

Companies are encouraged to review their existing leave policies to ensure that they comply with the new legislation, as very few provide supplemental paternity or partner leave in excess of the former statutory minimums.


*Covered daily earnings are currently 214.28 euros; the monthly equivalent is €4,660.59.

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