Australia's first national Paid Parental Leave scheme was introduced on 1 January 2011.
Under the Paid Parental Leave scheme, eligible working parents can get government-funded pay when they take time off from work to care for a newborn or recently adopted child.
Full-time, part-time, casual, seasonal, contract and self-employed workers may be eligible.
The Paid Parental Leave scheme provides two payments – Parental Leave Pay and Dad and Partner Pay.
Parental Leave Pay
Parental Leave Pay provides eligible working parents (usually birth mothers) with up to 18 weeks pay at the rate of the National Minimum Wage, currently around $606 per week before tax.
Government-funded Parental Leave Pay is usually provided by employers to long-term employees in their usual pay cycle. Parents who do not receive Parental Leave Pay from their employer or who do not have an employer, will receive the payments directly from Centrelink.
Dad and Partner Pay
Dad and Partner Pay provides eligible working dads or partners with up to two weeks pay at the rate of the National Minimum Wage for children born or adopted from 1 January 2013.
Dad and Partner Pay is paid directly by Centrelink in a single instalment. The role of employers in Dad and Partner Pay is to provide unpaid leave so that their eligible employees can access the entitlement.
Parents and employers can find out more about the Paid Parental Leave scheme , the eligibility requirements and how to apply, at the Australian Government Department of Human Services websiteLink to external website.
Review of the Paid Parental Leave scheme
The Australian Government is undertaking a review of the Paid Parental Leave scheme. The review will take into account the matters set out in legislation and will draw on submissions, consultations, administrative data and the emerging findings of the independent Paid Parental Leave evaluation.