Maternity Leave

I’m pregnant. What leave am I entitled to?

You are entitled to 26 consecutive weeks’ basic maternity leave. Maternity leave is generally taken two to four weeks before the expected birth. You must take at least two weeks before and four weeks after your expected week of confinement. The expected week of confinement is the week that the doctors expect you will give birth. You are entitled to an additional 16 weeks of unpaid leave immediately after your basic maternity leave ends.

How much notice should I give to the Training Centre about maternity leave?

You should notify your tutor or instructor as soon as possible so that we can ensure that we can support you and your requirements during your pregnancy.

You must give us at least 4 weeks’ written notice that you intend to take maternity leave. You must provide a medical certificate confirming the expected date of confinement. You must tell us in writing that you intend to take the 16 weeks’ additional unpaid leave either;

  • on the date that you notify us that you intend to take basic maternity leave; or
  • at least 4 weeks before the end of the 26 weeks’ basic maternity leave period.

You must inform us in writing that you intend to return to training at least four weeks before your intended date of return. We will try to facilitate you as far as is reasonably practicable to complete your training. You may have to complete your training at a later date or a different location if your original training programme has finished since you went on maternity leave.

Do I get paid Maternity Benefit or Training Allowances while I’m on maternity leave?

We do not pay Maternity Benefit or Training Allowances during the period of maternity leave. You should contact your local Department of Social Protection office as early as possible to discuss any entitlements that you may be due during your maternity leave. We may advise and give you time to visit your local Department of Social Protection Office once you give us notice that you intend to take maternity leave.

Can I take time off for medical appointments?

As an expectant mother, you may take reasonable time off for medical visits connected with the pregnancy. There is no maximum or minimum amount of time off specified for these visits. You are entitled to as much time off as is necessary to attend each visit. This includes the time required to travel to and from the appointment and the time taken for the appointment itself. You must, where practicable, give two weeks’ notice of your medical visits. You should show your appointment card if requested by the Training Centre at any time after your first appointment. If you receive a training allowance you are entitled to be paid while keeping these medical appointments for the duration of the course.

Can I take time off for ante-natal classes?

You are entitled to take time off to attend one complete set of antenatal classes during your pregnancy except for the last three classes of the set. An expectant father is also entitled to time off, on a once-off basis, to attend the last two antenatal classes.

Health and Safety

We may ask you for confirmation from your doctor that it is safe for you to continue your training. This will depend on the type of training programme you are doing. If a risk is identified, we may suspend all or part of your training in the interest of Health and Safety.

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