Employee rights when on leave

Keeping in touch days

Employees can work up to 10 days during their maternity, adoption or additional paternity leave. These days are called ‘keeping in touch days’. Keeping in touch days are optional - both the employee and employer need to agree to them.

The type of work and pay employees get should be agreed before they come into work. The employee’s right to maternity, adoption or additional paternity leave and pay isn’t affected by taking keeping in touch days.

Terms and conditions protection

Normally, the employment terms and conditions are protected and employees are entitled to any pay rises and improvements in terms and conditions given during the leave.

Pension contributions usually stop if a period of leave is unpaid, unless your contract says otherwise. For example, during unpaid periods of maternity leave or parental leave.

Employees continue to build up holiday entitlement and can take any holiday they’ve accrued (built up) before or after the leave.

Returning to work

Employees have the right to return to their job if they take:

  • Paternity Leave
  • only 26 weeks of Maternity or Adoption Leave
  • only 26 weeks of Shared Parental Leave (between both parents)
  • 4 weeks or less of unpaid Parental Leave

If employees take more leave

If the employee takes more leave they’ll have the right to their job or a similar job (if it’s not possible to give them their old job).

Similar means the job has the same or better terms and conditions. If the employee unreasonably refuses to take the similar job the employer can take this as their resignation.

Please see link below for more information