The statutory minimum amount your employer must pay you while on shared parental leave is up to 37 weeks of Statutory Shared Parental Pay (SSPP) at the lower of £148.68 a week or 90% of salary. 39 weeks are available for a partner where the mother dies in childbirth.
Unlike statutory maternity and adoption pay, where the first six weeks are paid at a higher rate – six weeks at 90% of a woman or primary adopter’s actual salary – shared parental leave is paid throughout at the same flat rate. As a result, most couples where both parties are employed are likely to be better off with maternity or adoption leave for the first six weeks, before swapping to shared parental leave.
Unions argue that the level of these statutory payments is not high enough. Before the reforms were introduced, the TUC campaigned for a higher rate of pay, pointing out that just one dad in twenty would be able to afford to take shared parental leave at the statutory rate of pay.
The statutory minimum is just that – a minimum. Check the policies in place where you work, as better pay may have been negotiated for shared parental leave, especially if a union is recognised where you work.