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If you’re a primary carer, you may be able to get preterm baby payments in addition to paid parental leave if you’re caring for a baby who was born live before week 37 of the pregnancy ─ as long as you’re eligible for parental leave payments.

Preterm baby payments are available for up to 13 weeks in a row, paid at the same rate as your paid parental leave payments.

Start date

Your preterm baby payment period can start from either:

  • the date the baby is born if the baby is born to you or your spouse or partner
  • the date any other person becomes the primary carer for the child.

End date

Your preterm baby payment period ends on the earliest of:

  • the date that would have been the start of week 37 of the pregnancy had your baby not been born early
  • the date you returned to work as an employee or a self-employed person
  • the date you stopped being the primary carer of the child (unless you are the person who gave birth to the child).

When your paid parental leave payments start

Your regular paid parental leave payments will start after your preterm baby payments finish. You’ll get payments for the full 26 weeks unless you return to work during that time or you transfer payments to your spouse or partner.

What we need to see

Please give us your baby’s IRD number or proof of your baby’s date of birth and the expected due date (if not already provided). We can then check to see if you’re eligible.

Send the documents to us through myIR in any of these ways:

  • when you apply for paid parental leave
  • attached to a web message
  • in ‘Manage my Entitlement’.

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Last updated: 22 Feb 2024
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