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What is the Paid Parental Leave scheme?

The Paid Parental Leave scheme is set up to help employers retain valuable staff by providing financial support for parents while they’re off work caring for a newborn or recently adopted child.

If you’re an Employer, you will receive funds from the Department of Human Services before you need to provide Parental Leave Pay to your eligible employees.

Under this scheme, eligible employees are granted 18 weeks of Government-funded Parental Leave Pay at the rate of the National Minimum Wage.

Full-time, part-time, casual, seasonal, contract and self-employed workers may be eligible.

The scheme is designed to help employers retain skilled employees by encouraging them to come back after fulfilling their parental duties.

As an employer, you must provide Paid Parental Leave (PPL) to all employees who:

  • have had a child born or adopted from 1 July 2011 and
  • have worked for you for at least 12 months before the expected date of birth or adoption and
  • will be your employee for his or her Paid Parental Leave period and
  • is Australian-based and
  • is expected to receive at least eight weeks of Parental Leave Pay.

In addition, your business must have an Australian Business Number (ABN) in order to participate in this scheme.

If your employee does not meet the above criteria, you are not required to provide Parental Leave Pay. If he or she is eligible and you both agree to it, however, you can still choose to provide it. Before your employee lodges his or her claim for the scheme, you need to register for Centrelink Business Online Services and then opt in to provide Parental Leave Pay.

For further advice and assistance in these matters, please contact our Employment Law Team.

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