Pregnancy, Parental, and Adoption Leave

Article 21 - Pregnancy, Parental and Adoption Leaves are an important and exciting time for your family.  All of us are dedicated to our students and research, but it’s equally important to take time for your personal family life; a 'time-out' which you’ll never regret.

Pregnancy Leave** can start up to 17 weeks before the birth of a child.  Normally it start just before or after the child’s birth. The Dean/Dept. Head must be informed at least 1 month in advance of the birth date by a written letter from your physician or caregiver.  Pregnancy leave includes 100% salary top-up of Employment Insurance (EI) Benefits for the first 17 weeks.

Parental Leave** starts immediately after Pregnancy leave, or can be taken any time within 52 weeks of the child’s birth by the parent or caregiver who did not take pregnancy leave.  Parental leave is paid at 100% top-up of EI Benefits for the first 12 weeks of leave for the parent not taking pregnancy leave.  It is paid at 100% top-up for 9 weeks for the parent who took pregnancy leave.  After that, the only income is the EI Benefit until it is exhausted.  If both parents work at the University and both take Parental leave, they both get 100% top up of EI for their 9 or 12 weeks.  However, the government will only issue one EI payment for parental leave per family, so it is shared between the two parents until it is exhausted.

Parental Leave is for 37 weeks for the parent not taking pregnancy leave.  If the member has taken pregnancy leave, parental leave is 35 weeks.

Adoption Leave can be requested at least 2 weeks before the adoption period, or in a case where the child comes into the immediate care of the parent for the first time, a shorter advisement time to the Dean or Dept. Head is allowed.  Adoption Leave follows a similar payment pattern as Pregnancy and Parental leave:  100% salary top-up of Employment Insurance (EI) Benefits for the first 17 weeks, then 100% of salary top-up of EI Benefits for the next 12 weeks.  The total leave available for Adoption Leave is 37 weeks. Adoption Leave may be extended for an additional 15 weeks if the child suffers from a physical, psychological or emotional condition that requires extended care.

**Bill 148, the Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017 has made some substantial changes to the Employment Standards Act (ESA) with respect to parental and pregnancy leaves. To review a summary of these changes, please click here to visit the Hicks Morley website.

Further information regarding pregnancy, parental and adoption leave can be found here.