Can I do any work while on shared parental leave?

Yes, within limits. While on shared parental leave, you and your employer can agree for you to carry out work or training for up to twenty days without bringing the leave to an end or losing your right to statutory shared parental pay (SSPP). These days (often called ‘SPLIT days’) are entirely voluntary and must be agreed by both sides.

Any work or training will count as one of the SPLIT days, even if it lasts just a few hours. SPLIT days can be used to help you participate in training sessions or team meetings, or to work part-time so as to phase in your return to work.

There is no contractual right to pay over and above the statutory weekly entitlement of £140.98 or 90% of average weekly earnings if less. Any extra pay will be a matter for a negotiated agreement but, as a minimum, your employer must not breach National Minimum Wage laws or engage in discrimination. When negotiating your pay, remember to ask for a full day’s normal wages even though you only expect to attend work for a few hours, as your commuting and childcare costs will be the same. 

In a workplace where a union is recognised, a formal policy on payment is likely to have been negotiated.

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.