PKF Kerikeri

Changes to Parental Leave

We all agree that proper planning always helps with little ones on the way. Especially if you are a business owner, and something seems to be in the water. Parental leave helps eligible working parents or other primary carers temporarily stop working to care for their new born baby, or for a child under six who is now in their care.

How will it affect my business?
Employers are already required to provide a minimum of 26 weeks job protected leave if the employee has been working for them for between six and 12 months, and if the employee has worked for 12 months or more, the period of job protected leave is 1 year.

Keeping In Touch Hours:
“Keeping in Touch” Hours – are the hours an employee can do paid work while they are on parental leave. From July 1st this increases from 40 hours to 52 hours during the leave period and will increase to 64 hours in 2020.

Who is Eligible?
The primary carer of a child under 6 years who has either worked or been self-employed and average of 10hours per week for at least 26/52weeks up to the babies due date or the date the child comes into their care. Some employees who aren’t eligible for parental leave can still get parental leave payments as long as they aren’t working.

If you don’t fit the above scenario’s you would be eligible for the best start program. This is a $60 per week payment (up to $3,120 per year) per child for babies born on or after 1 July 2018. For more information on this click the link at the bottom of the article.

How Much?
If you are employed – Your ordinary weekly pay with a cap at $538.55. If you are self-employed – Your ordinary weekly pay with a cap at $538.55.

When to apply:
Employees and self-employed can apply to Inland Revenue for paid parental leave before the baby’s birth, or any time up until 12 months after the child’s arrival. They must apply before they return to work for any employer or to self-employment.

Need to know more? Give us a ring on 09 407 7142. We would be more than happy to chat you through options that suit you.


Key Changes:
·         Number of weeks paid parental leave is up from 18-22 July 1st

·         Best Start program starts for babies born on or after July 1st

·         Keeping in touch hours up from 40h to 52 from July 1st


·         Parental Leave Eligibility

·         Payment Scenarios

·         Best Start Program