Can my husband or partner take paid time off to attend antenatal classes?

Your husband or partner has the right to take time off to attend up to two antenatal appointments, but the statutory right is to unpaid time off. This right is also available for intended parents in a surrogacy arrangement who qualify for and intend to apply for a Parental Order. If there is a recognised union in your workplace, there may be better rights in place (for example, a right to paid time off).

To qualify, your husband or partner must be an employee or an agency worker who has spent at least the preceding 12 weeks working on the same assignment for the same hirer.

The time off is capped at six and a half hours per appointment.

The employer is not allowed to ask for evidence of the appointment. This is because the appointment card belongs to you, as the expectant mother. However, the employer can ask for a signed declaration stating the date and time of the appointment and confirming that your husband or partner is in a qualifying relationship with you or your expected child and that the purpose of the time off is to accompany you to the appointment, made on the advice of a GP or midwife.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.