Every employee is entitled to parental leave. So make sure that you apply for this benefit without delay.
Dream opportunity to spend more time with the family. Full-time, part-time, 1/5 or a combination of the various options? The choice is yours.
For the sake of you and your family: don’t wait too long.
Parental leave must be applied for in writing. You must first send an email or letter to your employer. Don’t wait too long, because the employer can delay parental leave by up to six months. Once you have notified your employer, you can apply via an official application form from the National Employment Office. This must be sent by registered mail to your local National Employment Office within two months of the commencement of your parental leave at the latest. Important note: if you wish to split your parental leave, then you must apply for each period separately.
When and for how long?
Your child’s happiness always comes first. And nobody is better placed to organise your family life than yourself. You can therefore take your parental leave in the manner of your choosing. The options include:
You take 4 months of full-time leave. You can take this in one-month blocks, thus over 4 separate periods if desired.
You work 8 months part-time. You can take this in 2-month blocks.
1/5 parental leave
You work 4/5 over a 20-month period. You can take this in 5-month blocks.
You can also combine these options. For example, 2 months of full-time leave, followed by 4/5 or part-time work.
An exception to this is parental leave via half-days. This option has additional specifications which are listed here.
A replacement income. But how much exactly?
If you opt for parental leave, you will also want to know the amount of your replacement income. The amounts for full-time employees are listed below. But there’s more. Providing you satisfy a number of criteria, you may also be entitled to an incentive premium from the Flemish Government. Not sure whether you are entitled to this? Feel free to contact a KidsLife adviser so that we can check on your behalf.
You take a full-time career break:
You take part-time parental leave and are older than 50:
You take part-time parental leave and are younger than 50:
You take 1/5 parental leave and are older than 50:
Don’t confuse parental leave with time credit.
All those who have been employed by an employer for a minimum of one year can apply for parental leave. You can only apply for time credit (in order to spend more time with your child) at companies with more than ten employees and for children younger than 8 years of age. A collective labour agreement is required at the company or sectoral level for full- or part-time time credit. Parental leave is available for children up to and including 12 years of age (or up to and including 21 years of age if your child has a mental or physical disability). So, make sure that you take advantage of this entitlement. Because your child deserves every happiness.