Partners of newly born may not work for six weeks, as of July 2020.

2 december 2019 | Door:  Niels Woudstra

At the birth of the child, this partner was already absent for a week from 2019 due to the birth leave. As of July 2020, this brand new father/partner has the option of taking another five weeks of leave based on the new supplementary birth leave. These regulations are included in the Dutch Work and Care Act, in Dutch (WAZO).


If the birth takes place at a time when the partner should be at work, then according to the emergency leave, this partner may be absent from work at least for the required duration of this event to attend the birth. This also applies to the time that the employee needs to report the child to the official authorities. In these situations the employer will continue to pay the salary in full and approves the leave.

In addition, there are possibilities for this partner to enjoy another three days of leave without having to pay a salary to the employer. An employer has to approve this leave also, only compelling business interests can support a refusal.

Birth leave

Additionally, the partner can take maternity leave. Since 1 January 2019, partners have been given the number of working hours per week for this leave. For example, an employee works 5 days of 6 hours a day? Then he or she will receive 30 hours of leave: 5 x 6 working hours. The employer will continue to pay the salary in full during this leave. The employee can plan these leave days at his own discretion, but must do this within 4 weeks after the birth of the child. The wage costs of this leave are entirely for the employer.

Supplemental birth leave

As of July 1, 2020, partners can take up to 5 weeks of supplemental birth leave. They receive a benefit of 70% of their daily wage. However, there is a maximum of 70% of the maximum daily wage, so employees with the higher salaries will have a serious gap. The employee must take these leave within 6 months after the birth of the child. A condition is that an employee first appeals to the birth leave (100%).

An employee must also request the leave in whole weeks. In consultation with the employer, the employee can spread the additional leave over a period longer than 5 weeks. It is also possible to apply for this birth leave for less than 5 weeks. The employer may only refuse the application if there are compelling business interests. A different spread of leave hours can then be proposed, for example. However, employees can apply for leave far in advance. An employer then still has sufficient time to solve its problems in this regard.

For this right, the child must be born on or after July 1, 2020. It only concerns employees, so not available for entrepreneurs themselves. The employer requests the benefit from the Dutch authorities for social security (UWV) on behalf of the employee, from four weeks in advance to four weeks after the leave. UWV will pay the benefit.

During the leave, the employee simply accrues his holiday entitlements. Other employment conditions, such as pension accrual (and the contributions), can also be continued. The benefit of UWV is therefore not cost-effective for an employer.

So please start processing the application of employee early to ensure that there are no occupancy problems in your organization. Also make sure that you apply to UWV for the benefit in time.