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Cayman Parent | Articles | Expert Advice | Know Your Rights! Maternity Leave in Cayman

Know Your Rights! Maternity Leave in Cayman

Maternity leave is a special period for mum and baby. Make sure you know what you are entitled to! – Jessica Wright

The Cayman Islands’ Labour Law (2011 Revision) provides for a minimum maternity leave allowance of 12 calendar weeks in any 12 month period. However, this is only available as an entitlement where the mother concerned has completed a full year of employment with her employer.

Where an employee has not completed 12 months at work, the law prescribes that any maternity leave may be pro-rated. You should enquire with your employer as to their policy regarding maternity leave, as some employers can be more flexible than others. There is nothing in the law that prevents an employer from providing maternity benefits in excess of the minimums prescribed.

Currently an employer is legally required to offer 20 working days leave on full pay, 20 working days leave on half-pay and 20 working days on no pay. For practical purposes this is treated by many businesses as the equivalent of six weeks at full pay, and six weeks at no pay. Maternity leave may generally be taken in whatever portion requested by the employee including both before and after childbirth.

Other Leave Options:

Maternity Leave for Adoption
Cayman Islands law also provides for adoption leave. A female employee who adopts a child under the age of three, is entitled to adoption leave of nine calendar weeks, of which 15 working days are on full pay. Adoption leave may be granted once in any 36 month period.

Paternity Leave
At present there is no provision in the law for paternity leave. However, some companies are flexible and will allow the father of a newborn anything from a few days off to two weeks off. Usually it is a mix of paid and unpaid leave. The new Labour Relations Bill 2015 proposes that employers should offer paternity leave to new fathers, with five days paid and five days unpaid as a minimum. This has not yet been established at the time of going to print.


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