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Paternity leave policy

Paternity Leave Policy - Your Guide to Paternity Leave Policy in India

Looking to fine-tune your company's approach to paternity leave? Start here with our adaptable Employer Paternity Leave policy template. Also known as a 'parental leave policy' – either way, this can be your foundation to build upon.

The dual pressure of home and office can be overwhelming for new parents. The solution? Promoting equal parental leaves.

Paternity leave is making waves! As new parents cheer for more bonding time, companies are catching on. They're embracing family-first values and rooting for gender-equal leave. Yet, while many are leading the charge generously, some still lag.

Hence, drafting a robust paternity leave policy can be the solution to support employees during this crucial time.

What is paternity leave?

Paternity leave is a period that a father is allowed to take off from work following the birth or adoption of a child. 

The purpose of this leave is to allow the father to bond with the new child, support the partner, and help with childcare and household responsibilities during this significant life event. 

The specifics of paternity leave, such as its duration and whether it's paid or unpaid, vary by country, region, and individual employer policies. It's part of a broader category of family leave policies that also includes maternity leave and parental leave.

Paternity leave rules in India - what does the law say?

👉The Legal Backbone:

  • Foundation: The framework is constructed on the Central Civil Services (Leave) Rule 551 (A), 1972.

  • Primary Objective: The rule aims to safeguard and provide specific benefits to eligible male government employees.

👉Who's Covered?

  • Employee Category: Only government employees are covered under this mandate.

  • Duration: These employees are entitled to a 15-day leave.

  • Usage Window: The leave can be availed within six months following the birth or adoption of a child.

  • Service Requirement: To qualify, an employee should have been in service for a minimum of 80 days within the 12 months leading up to the expected birth or adoption date.

👉Monetary Benefits:

  • Salary: Eligible employees receive their full wages during this paternity leave period.

👉Employee Rights:

  • Leave Integrity: Paternity leave stands on its own—it doesn't eat into or get deducted from an employee's regular leave entitlements.

  • Assured Entitlement: Organizations can't dismiss a rightful paternity leave request. It's an employee's secured right, once the criteria are met.

👉Constraints to Be Aware Of:

  • Time-sensitive: If employees don't utilize this leave within the prescribed time frame, they lose it—it's deemed lapsed.

  • Adoption Specifications: For those considering adoption, the paternity leave benefit is applicable only if the adopted child hasn't crossed one year of age.

Paternity leave in the private sector - What should the HRs know?

The mentioned 15-day leave is tailored for central government employees. A nationwide formal paternity leave policy is currently absent for private sector employees.

Despite the legislative void, many private companies take the initiative. They're designing and offering paternity leave benefits, albeit governed by their organizational policies. 

Paternity leave in India for private companies - The current scenario!

  • Meesho is not just stopping at fathers, this e-commerce platform has instituted a 30-week gender-neutral parental leave policy, ensuring inclusivity for all new parents.
  • Flipkart, Razorpay, and Okcredit are offering an impressive up to 30 weeks of paid paternity leave.
  • Wipro India offers 8 weeks of paid paternity leave to new fathers.
  • Accenture provides generous 8 weeks of paid leave for new fathers and 26 weeks of maternity leave for new mothers.

Paternity leave in India for private companies - The current scenario!

Scope of paternity leave policy

The paternity leave policy applies to all regular employees who are new parents and identifies as male.

Designing a paternity leave policy - What should your policy outline?

1. Legal Compliance

👉Always keep abreast of India’s evolving labour laws and regulations. 

👉Tailor your paternity leave policies accordingly to ensure they're compliant and serve the best interests of your employees.

2. Transparent Communication:

👉Educate your workforce about their paternity rights and benefits. 

👉This not only involves issuing a comprehensive written policy document but also organizing informative sessions or workshops.

Address the following points -

  • Outline of the company's paternity leave provisions.
  • Eligibility criteria.
  • Employee rights and obligations under the policy.

Download Paternity Leave Policy Template

3. Simplified Application Process:

👉Facilitate an uncomplicated and efficient leave application process. The ease of applying will reassure employees of the company's genuine support.

👉Offer clear guidelines and assistance on the application prerequisites and documentation, if any.

Paternity leave policy - how can it help the organization?

1. Attraction of talent & retention:

👉According to a Deloitte survey, 57% of male respondents felt that taking paternity leave would be perceived as a lack of commitment to their jobs. 

👉However, 83% of millennials said they would leave their current job for one with more family-friendly benefits.

2. Increase employee productivity & morale:

👉A study from Ernst & Young found that companies with generous paternity and maternity benefits had employees who were 5.5 times more likely to say they were able to manage work and personal life. 

👉A healthy work-life balance ensures employee productivity.

3. Promoting gender equality:

👉According to McKinsey's research, companies in the top quartile for gender diversity are 15% more likely to have financial returns above their respective national industry medians.

👉Paternity leave helps balance home responsibilities, leading to more women returning to work and rising in leadership roles.

4. Decrease employee turnover rate:

👉The Center for American Progress noted that businesses spend about one-fifth of an employee's salary to replace them.

👉Supporting new fathers can reduce turnover and cut down costs on hiring new talent.

5. Improved brand image:

👉A PwC study found that 72% of employees would like to work for a company that champions flexible working and paternity leave. This branding increases the number of potential new hires.

Paid paternity leave enhances in-office employee recognition and retention, fostering a more positive workplace environment. Make sure the policy is flexible and meets the needs of new fathers.


This is a general guide, not a legal document, and may not cover all laws under the Indian Labour law. Neither the writer nor Pazcare will be liable for any legal consequences arising from its use. Consult with a legal professional to ensure compliance and adapt this guide to your business needs.

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