Paid Parental Leave scheme
The Paid Parental Leave scheme was introduced on 1 January 2011.
The Paid Parental Leave scheme provides Parental Leave Pay to support to eligible working parents to take time off work after a birth or adoption.
Parents and employers can find out more, including the eligibility requirements, the current rate of payment and how to apply, at the Services Australia website.
For more information about the Paid Parental Leave scheme see the Paid Parental Leave Guide.
News about Paid Parental Leave
The Paid Parental Leave scheme currently provides 20 weeks of payment for a child, with 2 weeks reserved for each parent.
Under the amendments in the Paid Parental Leave Amendment (More Support for Working Families) Bill 2023, subject to the passage of legislation, from 1 July 2024, 2 more weeks of payment will be added to Parental Leave Pay each year. This will increase the overall length of the Paid Parental Leave scheme by 6 weeks by July 2026.
By 2026, a total of 4 weeks will be reserved for each parent on a ‘use it or lose' it basis. This will help to encourage greater sharing of care responsibilities.
The Bill will also increase the number of Parental Leave Pay days that a family is able to take together (at the same time) to 4 weeks. This will increase flexibility for families and support parents to take time off work together after a birth.
Review of the Paid Parental Leave scheme
The Australian Government undertook a legislated review of the Paid Parental Leave scheme. The review took into account the matters set out in legislation and drew on:
- administrative data
- available findings of the independent Paid Parental Leave evaluation.
Read the Paid Parental Leave scheme review report.
Paid Parental Leave evaluation
An independent evaluation of the Paid Parental Leave scheme was completed over 4 phases between 2010 and 2014. The evaluation was conducted by a consortium of experts led by the University of Queensland’s Institute for Social Science Research. It is based on data collected through interviews and surveys with parents and employers.
Four reports have been produced under the evaluation:
- Paid Parental Leave evaluation Phase 1 report
- Paid Parental Leave evaluation Phase 2 report
- Paid Parental Leave evaluation Phase 3 report
- Paid Parental Leave evaluation Phase 4 report