Following the promulgation of various amendments to Labour Legislation late in 2018, we have been awaiting the much discussed “Paternity Leave” implementation.
On the 29th of October 2019, the presidency silently announced the implementation of various parts of the Labour Laws Amendment Act (Act 10 of 2018, hereinafter referred to as the LLA) which took effect on the 1st of November 2019.
Sections 9(a)(cA), 11, 15 and 16 of the Labour Laws Amendment Act amends the Unemployment Insurance Act (Act 63 of 2001, hereinafter referred to as the UIA) and speak to the implementation of three new types of Parental Leave, namely:
Parental Leave (Section 26A of the UIA)
Parental leave shall apply to either parent and will be for a period of ten (10) days. Such leave will be paid by virtue of a claim which the Employee must make against the UIF.
It is noted that this leave, while ordinarily being intended as so-called “Paternity Leave” can be applied for by either parent where the other parent would be entitled to Maternity Leave or either of the other two (2) new Parental Leave Types.
Adoption Leave (Section 26B of the UIA)
Adoption Leave shall apply to one of the adoptive parents, whereas the other shall be entitled to Parental Leave.
Adoption Leave may commence on the date on which an adopted child is placed with his/her adoptive parents or, where a final court order determines that the child is now the adopted child of the adoptive parents.
Adoption leave shall be for a period of ten (10) weeks.
Commissioning Leave (Section 26C of the UIA)
Commissioning Leave shall apply to one of the commissioning parents, whereas the other Commissioning Parent shall be entitled to Parental Leave.
Commissioning Leave shall apply in instances where parents, by virtue of a surrogacy arrangements, become parents to a child.
The Commissioning Leave shall be for a period of ten (10) weeks.
Effect on Existing Benefits
It must also be quite clear that the current use of Family Responsibility Leave in the instance of the birth of a child need also be revised.
Furthermore, Contracts of Employment must necessarily be updated to make provision for the new leave types.
Should you have any further queries or need assistance in implementing these amendments, please do not hesitate to contact us.