Adoptive Leave Scheme - Circular Letter 0054/2019 - Chapter 3
Adoptive Leave Entitlements
Adoptive leave consists of a period of 24 consecutive weeks from the date of placement of the child with the adopting teacher.
Adoptive leave is granted to teachers who are adopting mothers or sole male adopters. The adopting father who is not a sole male adopter may be entitled to adoptive leave in certain circumstances.
In order to qualify for adoptive leave, the adoption, whether foreign or domestic, must be formalised by the Adoption Authority of Ireland, the independent statutory body with responsibility for overseeing the adoption process on behalf of the State.
In the case of a domestic adoption, the employer must be supplied with a Certificate of Placement no later than four weeks after date of placement.
In the case of foreign adoptions, the adopting teacher must obtain a Declaration of Suitability and Eligibility from the Adoption Authority of Ireland, in advance of the date of placement. As soon as possible after the date of placement the adopting teacher should provide written confirmation of placement to their employer.
Statutory Additional Unpaid Adoptive Leave
An adopting teacher has the option to take a maximum of 16 consecutive weeks statutory additional unpaid adoptive leave.
In the case of foreign adoptions, some or all of the statutory additional unpaid adoptive leave may be taken prior to the date of placement, in order to allow the adopting teacher to attend meetings and/or classes held outside of the State, or for the purposes of familiarisation with the child. A period of statutory additional unpaid adoptive leave taken under this provision must cease no later than the last day immediately prior to the date of placement. The balance of any statutory additional unpaid adoptive leave remaining may be taken immediately after the end of adoptive leave.
An adopting teacher who avails of statutory additional unpaid adoptive leave may be entitled to receive PRSI credits.
Application forms for Adoptive Leave Credits are available from the DEASP.
Non-Statutory Additional Unpaid Adoptive Leave to the end of the school year
An adopting teacher who, on completion of adoptive leave and statutory additional unpaid adoptive leave may apply for non-statutory additional unpaid adoptive leave to the end of the school year.
In the context of this leave the 'end of the school year' is taken to mean August 31st.
This type of leave is not a statutory entitlement and it is subject to obtaining written sanction from the employer at least six weeks in advance of an intention to avail of this leave.
Sequence in which leave must be taken
a. In the case of foreign adoptions some or all of the statutory additional unpaid adoptive leave (maximum of 16 weeks) may be taken prior to placement.
b. Adoptive leave (24 weeks)
c. Statutory additional unpaid adoptive leave up to a maximum of 16 weeks (In the case of foreign adoptions this refers to any entitlement remaining from the 16 weeks not already used prior to the adoption)
d. Non-statutory additional unpaid adoptive leave to end of school year (Aug 31st)
Application for adoptive leave both paid and unpaid should be made by adopting teachers to their employer at least 6 weeks in advance of commencement of the leave.
The Employers application form is located at to Circular letter 0054/2019 - Adoptive leave Scheme - Chapter 3 - Appendix A.
In order to claim Adoptive Benefit the teacher is responsible for completion of the AB1 form and should ensure that the completed form is submitted directly to the Department of Social Protection six weeks in advance of the commencement of the leave.
The completed AB1 form should be not be sent to the Department of Education and Skills.
Adoptive Benefit payment will be treated as taxable income.
Non-Permanent teachers may be entitled to adoptive benefit from the Department of Social Protection.
To qualify for Adoptive Benefit, you must satisfy one of the following PRSI contribution conditions. You must have:
at least 39 weeks PRSI* paid contributions in the 12 month period before the date of placement of your child,
at least 39 weeks PRSI* paid contributions since first starting work and at least 39 weeks PRSI paid or credited contributions in the relevant tax year or in the year following the relevant tax year,
at least 26 weeks PRSI* paid contributions in the relevant tax year and at least 26 weeks PRSI* paid contributions in the tax year prior to the relevant tax year.
*Only PRSI Classes A, E and H count.
Statutory Annual Leave/Public Holiday Entitlement
The statutory entitlement to annual leave is 20 days plus public holidays, as teacher holidays exceed the statutory entitlement the Department of Education's obligation to give back days in lieu for annual leave and public holidays is normally met through existing school closures.
When availing of statutory adoptive leave and if there are not enough school closure days in the leave year to absorb all annual leave entitlements, it is permitted to take the necessary days immediately before the adoptive leave in the same year. Alternatively, teachers will be permitted to carry the balance forward to the following leave year but must then take these days during school closures. Teachers who resign/ retire or their employment ceases may be entitled to additional payment in lieu of their accrued leave.
Time off for Pre-Adoption Classes, Meetings and Visits within the State
An adopting teacher is entitled to time off work, without loss of pay, to attend pre-adoption classes or meetings held within the State which they are obliged to attend as part of the adoption process.
Two weeks notice should be given for each absences referred to above and appropriate certification provided. Substitution for such absences will be paid by the Department / ETB.
Fixed Term Appointments / Fixed Purpose Appointments
A teacher who is on a fixed term/fixed purpose contract of employment shall have full adoptive leave entitlements during the term of the contract. The granting or taking of adoptive leave entitlements should not affect a fixed-term appointment or the renewing of such an appointment.
All absences covered under adoptive leave entitlements are substitutable. Contracts awarded to cover these absences should make reference to the fact that there are circumstances where the replacement appointment may have to be terminated in the event of the absent teacher returning to duties earlier than initially expected (e.g. an absent teacher postpones part of the adoptive leave due to the hospitalisation of the child)
Termination of Placement
Where, other than as a result of the death of the child, the placement of a child with a teacher terminates before the expiration of the adoptive leave or statutory/ non-statutory additional unpaid adoptive leave, the teacher must notify the employer in writing of the date of termination within 7 days.
With effect from 1st September 2016 registered teachers are entitled to a single period of 2 consecutive weeks paid paternity leave.This leave is available to a relevant parent on the birth/adoption of a child, where the date of birth/day of placement falls on or after 1st September 2016.
Paternity Leave may commence at any time from the date of birth or date of placement of the child to 26 weeks thereafter.
For full details on the paternity leave scheme for registered teachers please refer to Circular letter 0054/2019 - Adoptive leave Scheme - Chapter 3.
Resumption of Duties
The employer should provide the absent teacher with a written statement of his/her absence and expected date of resumption of duties. Four weeks before the teacher is due to return to the workplace written notice should be given to the employer confirming the intention to resume duties from that date.
For further details on Adoptive Leave Entitlements please refer to- Circular letter 0054/2019 - Adoptive leave Scheme - Chapter 3.