Paid Parental Leave Commencing 1 January 2011

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The Rudd Government's paid parental leave scheme starts on 1 January next year - exactly nine months from
1 April 2010. Eligible parents can receive up to $9788 for 18 weeks Paid Parental Leave.

Couples who conceive on or after 1 April 2010 may be eligible for payments under Australia's first paid parental leave scheme - if their baby is born on or after 1 January.

The scheme will provide eligible working parents with 18 weeks parental leave, paid at the National Minimum Wage (currently $543.78 a week before tax of $9788 over 18 weeks). This leave can be shared between both parents, to suit the needs of each Australian family.

Families have been waiting for decades for a paid parental leave scheme.

The Paid Parental Leave scheme will give more parents support to spend more time at home with a new baby and help employers retain valuable skills and experience.

To be eligible for Paid Parental Leave, a mother (or other primary carer including an adoptive parent) will need to:

  • have been engaged in work continuously for at least 10 of the 13 months prior to the expected birth or adoption of the child
  • have undertaken at least 330 hours of paid work in the 10 month period (an average of around one day of paid work a week)
  • have an adjusted taxable income of $150,000 a year or less in the previous financial year.( see our post on Adjusted Taxable Income)
The Government's Paid Parental Leave scheme is based on the expert recommendations of the Productivity Commission.

(Source: Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs)

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