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Maternity and Paternity rights and benefits

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) published an independent survey on maternity and paternity rights and benefits. It assessed the resulted impact of the significant legislative changes to mothers' and fathers' rights and benefits, in effect since 2002.

The following have had a significant effect on working life and lifestyles.
  • Increased maternity pay
  • Longer maternity leave
  • Introduction of paternity pay/leave
  • The right to request flexible working schedules for parents of young or disabled children.
The key findings of this independent research are:
  • 75% of mothers now take their full maternity pay entitlement, up from two thirds in 2002. Mothers also take more time off. Six months is now the average period of maternity leave, up from four months in 2002.
  • Fathers take more leave. 93 % of dads take time off close to the birth, 79% taking up entitlement to paternity leave.
  • 68% of mums and 54% of dads have flexi-time available to them, up from the 2002 figures of 44% for women and 22% for men.
  • 47% of mums and 31% of dads work flexi-time, compared to just 17% of women and 11% of men in 2002.
  • Less mums changed their employer when returning to work. the figures are halved from 41% in 2002 to 20% now.
April 2007 saw new measures to provide even more support for parents including:
  • Maternity and adoption pay extended from six to nine months.
  • 26 weeks additional paternity leave now available for fathers, some of which paid when the mother returns to work.
  • Help for employers to manage the administration of leave and pay. Assistance for businesses to plan ahead with greater certainty
The full report can be found on the DTI's website
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