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Parent's leave

Application timeframes

The timeline for applying for leave is 6 weeks in advance of the start date of the leave, and if possible earlier than this.

You can download an application form here.


The Parent’s Leave and Benefit Act 2019 provides seven weeks parent’s leave to relevant parents in respect of children born or, in the case of adoption, placed on or after 1 November 2019.

Parent's leave is not applicable to children born or placed prior to 1 November 2019.

Payment while on leave

This leave is salary affected, as the civil service does not pay a salary top up for officers availing of this leave. Officers availing of parent’s leave can apply to the Department of Social Protection (DSP) for Parent’s Benefit to receive a benefit payment while on this leave. Further information regarding Parent’s Benefit can be found on the DSP website.


Parent's leave must be taken in weekly blocks, but can be split and taken in the following ways:

  • One continuous 7 week block
  • 7 instances of 1 week blocks
  • Any combination of weekly blocks, subject to a combined total amount of 7 weeks

Parent's Leave cannot be taken before the date of birth or date of placement of the child. The leave can start, at earliest, on the date of birth or date of placement.

Parent's leave can only be taken within the first 2 years after the date of birth or placement of the child. After the 2 year period has elapsed, the entitlement to parent's leave is forfeit.

Supporting documents

Supporting documentation is required before an application for parent’s leave can be processed.

When applying for Parent’s Leave please provide one of the below supporting documents:

As this leave is not paid for by the employer, officers applying for this leave should try to submit their applications at least 6 weeks before the commencement date, to minimise the risk of overpayment.

How to apply for parent’s leave

To submit an application, you can log into HR self-service. To attach supporting documents, to view progress on an existing case, or to submit a manual application form, you can log into the case management system. Please note: only officers without HR self-service access may submit manual forms.

Parent's Leave can be applied for via self-service, by selecting 'non-annual leave' then selecting 'parent's leave'.

Once the e-form has been submitted it will automatically go to your line manager for approval. The line manager will have 6 days in which to approve or deny the application. After the 6 days have passed the e-form will escalate to your second line manager for action.

On the non-annual leave applications section of your self-service page you have the option to cancel your application for parent's leave prior to your manager approving the e-form.

Amending an application

Where the child is born earlier or later than expected you can amend your parent’s leave dates by having your line manager email (quoting the case ID of your original application) to advise of the new dates on which the parent's leave will take place. The leave management team will then amend your leave accordingly.

Parent's leave process

  • 6 weeks before the start date of the parent's leave, the officer completes the parent's leave e-form form with the dates and durations of the leave. Multiple instances of parent's leave can be submitted on the same e-form.
  • The manager approves the e-form, which will create a case for the leave to be processed.
  • The case is received by the leave management team and is assigned out to be processed.
  • The leave management team check the e-form to ensure that the application has been approved by the line manager, and that all supporting documents have been submitted and are in order. If supporting documents have not been included we will contact you to request them.
  • The leave management team will update the parent's leave on the officer’s records. We will also calculate the number of bank holidays owed (taking account the officer’s work pattern) and will amend the expected return date to account for the number of bank holidays owed, if any.
  • The leave management team will issue a confirmation letter to the officer, manager and local HR to confirm the details and expected return date of the leave.
  • The leave management team will notify the pay team of the details of the leave, and request that the officer is removed from payroll for the duration of the parent's leave.
  • Please Note: Applications for Parents Benefit are completed by the employee themselves. NSSO have no part in completing Parents Benefit Forms.