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Know Your Rights: Leave for Working Parents




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 or log on to

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

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O’Connor’s college concert a resounding successAccordion maestro Liam O’Connor does not do things by halves.

He proved it again last Thursday night when he hosted his ninth ‘Liam O’Connor Concert with St Brendan’s College Students’ in the school’s chapel. While the concert was always about […]




He proved it again last Thursday night when he hosted his ninth ‘Liam O’Connor Concert with St Brendan’s College Students’ in the school’s chapel.

While the concert was always about showcasing the students’ talents as musicians and singers, the guest list would not have looked out of place on Ryan Tubridy’s Late Late Show on RTÉ One.

The GAA world was represented by former Kilkenny hurling manager Brian Cody, Kerry stars and past students of St Brendan’s Dara Moynihan, David Clifford and Gavin White.

Of course, legendary RTÉ sports commentator Marty Morrissey was on hand to get the best responses out of the sporting stars.

O’Connor and his musical children Saoirse, Oisín, and Cillian who is a student of the college, weren’t even the top musical bill on the night.

That honour went to Paddy Casey.

“Casey royally entertained one and all, and our surprise guest, the RTÉ broadcaster Marty Morrissey, enthralled us with his views on Kerry footballers Dara Moynihan, Gavin White and David Clifford,” Liam told the Killarney Advertiser.

“A night of unbelievable synergies was completed with an abundance of local talent. It was a truly unique night of star talent that will live on in the memories of everyone who was there.”

Liam also paid special tribute to the college Principal Seán Coffey and music teachers Mish O’Donoghue and Niamh O’Connell for their colossal support.

“The students themselves were indeed amazing, with the energy they brought to their singing, dancing and playing music. Their commitment to the event was such that they generously gave up their lunch hours to help make it all work,” he added.

The success of the concert rounded off a busy year for the international-renowned accordion champion that included a high-energy appearance at Electric Picnic and an equally lauded performance with the Celtic Tenors at the rugby clash between Munster and world champions South Africa at Páirc Uí Chaoimh, Cork.

He and his son Oisín also made history in November when they became the first father and son pair to play both football and music at Croke Park on the same day.

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Marie was “lovely, unassuming lady”

By Sean Moriarty Tributes have been paid to Marie Murphy of Aughacureen, who died in tragic circumstances on November 30. Marie was a member of the well known Murphy business […]




By Sean Moriarty

Tributes have been paid to Marie Murphy of Aughacureen, who died in tragic circumstances on November 30.

Marie was a member of the well known Murphy business family in Killarney – her brother runs KWD Recycling and she was heavily involved in the business.

She was best known for involvement in the local GAA both as a county star and a member of Fossa GAA Club.

She was a third generation Kerry footballer, her grandfather Con and father John all played football for Kerry.

She was extremely proud of her niece Abbie, her brother Seán’s daughter, when she became the fourth generation Murphy to play for Kerry.

Marie played for Kerry in 1976 and re-joined Fossa GAA Club in 2010 when the ladies’ side of the club was re-formed.

She acted as a mentor for current group of ladies.

Back in 2019 when Fossa GAA Club published a book to mark its 50th anniversary she was one of the leading lights on that committee.

This year, when the club held its Night of Legends to raise funds for a new dressing room for the ladies’ club, Marie was one of the guests of honour at the INEC event and was interviewed on the stage in front of a capacity audience.

Only a few weeks ago she was one of the many club members who helped organise the Fossa Golf Classic and acted as official photographer for that event.

“The club is numb with sadness,” said Fossa GAA chairman Dermot Clifford. “She was a loyal member and very proud of the club. Our thoughts are with her family. A lovely, unassuming lady who will be sorely missed.”

Marie will be sadly missed by her brothers Con, Seamus and Seán, sisters-in-law Breda, Gennie and Anna, her nieces Shauna, Amy, Kate and Abigail, nephews John, Jack, Luke, aunties Mairead and Maura, cousins, relatives, neighbours and a large circle of friends.

She was laid to rest at Old Aghadoe Cemetery on Monday following Requiem Mass at The Prince of Peace Church, Fossa.

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