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For individuals & families: As a parent

Paid parental leave

What is paid parental leave?

Paid parental leave is a government-funded entitlement paid to eligible working mothers and adoptive parents when they take parental leave from their job(s) to care for their newborn or adopted child (under the age of six). These payments go towards the loss of income that working mothers and adoptive parents experience when they take parental leave from work to care for a new baby or adopted child.

Paid parental leave payments equal your normal pay (before tax) if you're an employee, or your average weekly earnings if you're self-employed, up to a current maximum of $504.10 a week before tax. If you're self-employed and make a loss or earn less than the minimum wage, for at least 10 hours work a week, the payment is $142.50 each week before tax (this is equivalent to 10 hours each week at the current minimum wage rate).

You can receive paid parental leave for a maximum of 14 weeks. You can transfer your paid parental leave to your spouse or partner, as long as they also qualify for paid parental leave from their employer or self-employment.

Inland Revenue will pay parental leave payments directly into your bank account each fortnight. The payments will be treated as income, just like your normal salary and wages or self-employed income. Paid parental leave payments have tax and student loan deductions taken out (at whatever rate applies to you). It will not have earners' levy deducted from it.

For more information and how to apply

For more information about paid parental leave, to find out if you're eligible and how to apply, visit the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's website (formerly the Department of Labour) or call them on 0800 20 90 20.

Maximum weekly amounts for previous years

Start date Maximum for Employees
(before tax)
Self-employed - with a loss or income less than the minimum wage.
(before tax)
1 July 2014 $504.10 $142.50
1 July 2013 $488.17 $137.50
1 July 2012 $475.16 $135.00
1 July 2011 $458.82 $130.00




Date published: 30 Jun 2014

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