Parental Leave Act, 1998

Postponement by employer of parental leave.

11.—(1) Subject to this section, where an employee has given a notice under section 8 (1) to his or her employer and the employer is satisfied that the taking of parental leave at the time specified in the notice would have a substantial adverse effect on the operation of his or her business, profession or occupation by reason of seasonal variations in the volume of the work concerned, the unavailability of a person to carry out the duties of the employee in the employment, the nature of those duties, the number of employees in the employment or the number thereof whose periods, or parts of whose periods, of parental leave will fall within the period specified in the said notice or any other relevant matters, the employer may, by notice in writing given to the employee not later than 4 weeks before the intended commencement of the leave, postpone the commencement of the leave to such time not later than 6 months after the date of commencement specified in the relevant notice under section 8 (1) as may be agreed upon by the employer and the employee.

(2) Before giving a notice under this section to an employee, an employer shall consult with the employee in relation to the proposed postponement of parental leave.

(3) A notice under subsection (1) shall contain a statement in summary form of the grounds for the postponement of the commencement of the parental leave concerned.

(4) The commencement of parental leave in respect of a particular child may not be postponed more than once under this section unless a ground for the postponement is seasonal variation in the volume of the work concerned; and, where that is a ground for the postponement, such commencement in respect of a particular child may not be postponed more than twice.

(5) Subsection (1) does not apply to parental leave in relation to which a confirmation document has been signed by the parties concerned.

(6) If, solely because of the postponement under this section of the commencement of parental leave—

(a) the child concerned attains the age of 5 years, or

(b) in the case of a child who is the subject of an adoption order and who had attained the age of 3 years, but had not attained the age of 8 years, on or before the date of the making of that order, the period of 2 years beginning on that date expires during the period of parental leave to which the employee concerned is entitled,

then, the attainment or, as the case may be, the expiration, aforesaid shall be deemed, for the purposes of this Act, to have occurred after the end of the period of parental leave aforesaid.

(7) An employer shall retain a copy of a notice under this section given by him or her to an employee of his or hers and the employee shall retain the notice.

(8) In this section, references to parental leave include references to a period of parental leave specified in section 7 (1)(b).