Paid Parental Leave Scheme
What does the Paid Parental Leave scheme mean in real terms for parents or parents to be?
Here are the Paid Parental Leave facts:
- The scheme begins for mothers of babies born on or after 1 January 2011
- PPL is a Government funded payment equivalent to the minimum national wage. The current rate (June 2012) is $589.40 a week, before tax, that can be taken by working parents for 18 weeks at any time in the first year after birth. It is also available to adoptive parents.
- In order to be eligible there are three key criteria to fulfil:
- you must be an Australian citizen, or a permanent resident;
- the primary caregiver must earn less than $150,000 per annum.(Your partner’s wage is irrelevant); and
- you must have worked continuously for 10 of the 13 months before your due date, or worked a minimum of 330 hours over the past 10 months (this works out to be about a day a week). Part time and casual workers are included as well as those who are self-employed
- The PPL is transferable. If you choose to return to work before the 18 weeks is up, you may transfer the rest of the PPL payments to your partner so long as your partner fulfils the same three criteria.
- You will not be able to work while receiving PPL income, but you may engage with the workplace under the ‘Keeping in Touch’ provisions. This means you can agree to participate in activities at the workplace, for up to 10 days from the birth or adoption of your child until the end of your Paid Parental Leave period without losing Parental Leave pay. These days need not be consecutive.
- You can apply for the PPL through the Department of Human Services. If you are a “long time employee”, the Department of Human Services will notify you and your employer.
- You can lodge your claim up to three months before the expected date of birth or adoption of your child.
- If you qualify for PPL and choose to take it, you automatically forfeit the Baby Bonus unless you have multiple births
- If you are a stay-at-home mother you are still eligible to apply for the Baby Bonus, Family Tax Benefit Part A and Family Tax Benefit Part B. These are all means tested.
This article was written by Sarah Pietrzak. You can read more from Sarah on the Huggies Blogs