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Know Your Rights: Leave for Working Parents

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Parents have a right to time off work to look after their children. They have several different types of statutory leave entitlements, for example, Maternity Leave, Adoptive Leave, Paternity Leave, Parental Leave and Parent’s Leave.

Maternity Leave: The law in Ireland provides specific protection for pregnant employees. You are entitled to paid time-off work to attend any medical visits (also known as antenatal visits or appointments) associated with the pregnancy and to attend a certain number of antenatal classes.

You are entitled to 26 weeks of Maternity Leave, typically starting two weeks before your due date. You may also be entitled to Maternity Benefit if you have enough social insurance (PRSI) contributions. You can take additional Maternity Leave for up to 16 more weeks, beginning immediately after the end of your 26 weeks’ basic Maternity Leave. Maternity Benefit does not cover additional Maternity Leave, and your employer does not have to pay you during this time.

Adoptive Leave: If you have become a parent through adoption, you can take Adoptive Leave from employment. If you have enough PRSI contributions you may qualify for Adoptive Benefit. Adoptive Leave gives 24 weeks’ leave off work to one parent of the adopting couple or a parent who is adopting alone. The 24 weeks start from the date the child is placed in your care. You can take up to 16 additional weeks’ unpaid Adoptive Leave but you cannot claim Adoptive Benefit for these extra weeks. The parent who does not avail of Adoptive Leave is entitled to Paternity Leave.

Paternity Leave: New parents (other than the mother of the child) are entitled to two weeks' Paternity Leave from employment or self-employment in the six months following the birth or adoption of a child. You can take time off if you are employed or self-employment, and can start the leave any time in the first six months after the baby's birth or adoption. It does not matter how long you have been working for your employer or how many hours you work a week. Usually, fathers take Paternity Leave. Paternity Leave is also available to same-sex couples. Your employer does not have to pay you during Paternity Leave, but you may qualify for Paternity Benefit if you have enough PRSI contributions.

Parent’s Leave aims to let working parents spend more time with their baby or adopted child during the first two years. Each parent is entitled to five weeks of paid Parent’s Leave for a child born or adopted on or after November 1, 2019. Parent’s Leave is available to both employees and people who are self-employed. Parent’s Benefit is paid while you are on Parent’s Leave if you have enough PRSI contributions. Your employer does not have to pay you while you are on Parent’s Leave, although some employers may ‘top-up’ your Parent’s Leave. If you qualify for Parent’s Benefit, you will get €250 each week. Plans to extend Parent’s Leave were announced in Budget 2022 but the specific date when these changes will be implemented have not yet been announced.

Parental Leave: Since 1 September 2020 each parent is entitled to 26 weeks’ unpaid Parental Leave. You must take Parental Leave before the child is 12 years of age, or 16 years of age if the child has a disability. In general, you must have been working for your employer for at least 12 months to be entitled to Parental Leave. There is no Social Welfare payment available. Both parents have an equal, separate entitlement to Parental Leave. This means you are both entitled to 26 weeks leave. If you both work for the same employer and your employer agrees, you can transfer 14 weeks of your Parental Leave entitlement to the other parent. If you change job and have used part of your Parental Leave allowance, you can use the remainder of your allowance after one year's employment with your new employer (once your child is still under 12).

If you need further information about any of the issues raised here or you have other questions, you can call a member of the local Citizens Information Service in Kerry on 0818 07 7860. They will be happy to assist you and if necessary arrange an appointment for you.

Kerry Helpline 0818 07 7860 Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm. Alternatively you can email on tralee@citinfo.ie or log on to www.citizensinformation.ie.

The National Phone Service is available on 0818 07 4000 Monday to Friday 9am to 8pm.

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Credit Union launch a new collaboration with Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd.

Building on recent success the Credit Unions of Kerry and West Limerick have launched a new collaboration with Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd. Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd specialise in Photovoltaic (PV) […]

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Building on recent success the Credit Unions of Kerry and West Limerick have launched a new collaboration with Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd.

Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd specialise in Photovoltaic (PV) Solar systems that generate electricity, battery storage, air to water heat-pumps and much more.
Gilroy’s work with customers to receive the SEAI once-off grant towards the purchase and installation of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems and heat pumps for your home.
Collaborating with Kerry and West Limerick Credit Union expands the finance options available to Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd customers to help finance new PV Solar Panel installations. Loan rates will be directly linked to the property BER starting from 4.7%(4.89APR) for an “A” rated BER.
Martin Gilroy; CEO with Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd said: “We are delighted to officially launch this collaboration with the Credit Unions of Kerry and West Limerick. Customers have already reaped the benefits on recent installation projects after contacting their local Credit Union. Having a direct link to local Credit Unions allows us to guide customers to affordable financing options based on the specific installation quotation we provide at very competitive rates.“
Speaking on behalf of the Kerry and West Limerick Credit Unions, Ashley Fitzgerald added: “We are delighted to have Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd come on board as part of our Greener Homes Loan offering. Home Energy Upgrade have become a prominent concern and talking point among members in recent months, by Credit Unions having a direct link with Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd allows both sides to make referrals and seek the best finance option for members. We are working hard building relationships with Green Energy Ltd providers as we want to ensure our members can avail of the best loan rates for all upgrade works.”
Credit Unions across Kerry and West Limerick. Abbeyfeale Credit Union, Cara Credit Union, Killarney Credit Union, Listowel Credit Union and Rathmore and District Credit Union can be reached via: www.creditunion.ie
Gilroy’s Green Energy Ltd can be contacted on 066-7115920, email info@gilroys.ie or for more information visit www.gilroys.ie.

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Racegoers Club to host Cheltenham Preview Night

Killarney Racegoers Club will host its annual Cheltenham Preview Night in Corkery’s Bar on March 7. Admission is free and this year’s chosen beneficiary is the Killarney Branch of St […]

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Killarney Racegoers Club will host its annual Cheltenham Preview Night in Corkery’s Bar on March 7.

Admission is free and this year’s chosen beneficiary is the Killarney Branch of St Vincent De Paul Society.
The expert panel includes professional punter Paddy Wilmott, leading jockey Conor McNamara, up-and-coming Kerry-based trainer Eoin McCarthy and local bookmaker Brendan Tyther with Vince Casey acting as the event’s compere.

“There is no admission fee but a raffle on the night for dual membership of Killarney Racegoers Club for the year, which includes 13 days racing and many reciprocal days to other race meetings,” said Mr Casey.

The Cheltenham Festival begins on March 12.

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