Is it just me or are others concerned that we still don’t have any detailed guidance from HMRC on additional paternity leave and pay, and as far as I know no spec for the software developers either?
Given software for 2011/12 has to be signed off in December for shipping this is awfully tight – HMRC have a protocol with the software industry that they should have 18 months lead time for such developments.
I accept that this isn’t HMRC’s fault:
- the election will have derailed things as it will not have been certain that the regs wouldn’t be repealed and
2. there are at least four government departments involved which is like herding cats – I know from my days in policy at the IPP, but time is of the essence now.
Employers need to be setting out policies for employees and considering what changes may need to be made to maternity policies if extending the same rights to fathers would prove too costly – is anyone out there planning to level down occupational entitlements perhaps because you have a male-dominated workforce and are worried about the cost impact?
Remember that where babies that are due are born prematurely, new rights for dads could kick in before the end of this tax year and if you are one of the employers who has an employee whose partner dies in childbirth (yes, sadly that happens in at least 300 cases a year) then her partner (your employee) could be off from November of this year for up to 52 week, so there is no time to put policy work on the back burner.