New rights for fathers and partners to attend antenatal appointments


With effect from Wednesday 1st October 2014 those employees who have a 'qualifying relationship' with a pregnant woman have the right to accompany her to antenatal appointments. The time off work is unpaid, is limited to two occasions and is 'capped' at 6.5 hours for each appointment. There is no service requirement - the right is available from day one of employment.

To qualify the employee must be the spouse or civil partner of the pregnant woman and in a long-term (enduring) relationship. It does not matter how the child was conceived and in certain circumstances the right may apply to surrogacy arrangements.

As an employer you cannot ask for 'evidence', such as an appointment card, of the antenatal appointments. However, you can ask the employee for a declaration stating the date and time of the appointment, that time off is for the purpose of attending an antenatal appointment with the expectant mother, and that the appointment has been made on the advice of a registered medical practitioner, nurse or midwife.

This does not affect the pregnant woman's statutory rights.

Planned changes to parental leave and pay are expected to come into effect in April 2015 and we will be producing information about them.


If you would like to discuss this or any other issue facing your organisation please speak to your usual contact at Collinson Grant or Jo Hale on 0161 703 5600

Although care has been taken in the preparation of this Newsletter, Collinson Grant cannot accept responsibility for errors, omissions or advice given. Readers should note that only Acts of Parliament and Statutory Instruments have the force of law and only the courts can authoritatively interpret the law.