Taking parental leave has implications. There are likely to be financial losses, ongoing professional responsibilities and, if you are a practice owner, management issues that you need to identify and consider. When you return to work, you may want to change your hours of work or other practice arrangements. A good understanding of your maternity, adoption, and paternity rights is essential.
Arrangements for providing general dental services and personal dental services vary throughout the UK; parental leave payments are available to all dentists, but the rules differ.
The ‘Parental leave and pay’ refers to the requirements that relate to maternity, adoption and paternity leave and pay.
Where NHS is referred to, this means National Health Service dentistry that is provided in Great Britain. Where HSC is referred to, this means Health and Social Care dentistry that is provided in Northern Ireland.
Key learning points
This advice should help you understand your right to parental leave and pay and your professional and contractual obligations. It explains:
- The entitlement of dentists providing NHS/HSC dentistry to leave and pay and the criteria for eligibility
- The test period for calculating parental leave payments and how to calculate the amount that you should receive
- The timescales and time-limits for submitting claims
- The responsibilities for appointing a locum and other available options
- Returning to work – your obligations and considerations for part-time working.