What Is Paternity Leave in Singapore?

Discover Singapore's Paternity Leave: Supporting family dynamics, promoting work-life balance. Learn about eligibility and benefits

What Is Paternity Leave in Singapore?

What Is Paternity Leave in Singapore?

Paternity leave (GPPL) in Singapore is a statutory entitlement provided to fathers or husbands upon the birth or adoption of their child. Paternity leave started in Singapore on January 1, 2017, and it includes self-employed fathers. 

It provides time off from work to participate actively in the care and nurturing of their newborn or adopted child. 

Here are the benefits of paternity leave:

  • Encourages bonding: Paternity leave Singapore allows fathers to bond with their newborns during the crucial early stages of development, fostering stronger emotional connections within the family.
  • Shared responsibilities: By taking paternity leave, fathers can actively participate in caregiving duties, promoting gender equality in parenting responsibilities and supporting their partners.
  • Positive impact on child development: Father involvement during infancy and early childhood positively influences children’s cognitive and socioemotional development.
  • Health benefits for parents and children: Paternity leave Singapore enables fathers to support their partners in postnatal recovery and breastfeeding, contributing to better maternal and infant health outcomes.

Workplace satisfaction and loyalty: Providing paternity leave enhances employee satisfaction, loyalty, and retention, as it demonstrates employer support for work-life balance and family values.

Who Is Eligible for Paternity Leave in Singapore?

As a working father, you can qualify for Government-Paid Paternity Leave (GPPL) for all childbirths. 

However, you must satisfy the following criteria: 

  • Your child must hold Singapore citizenship.
  • You are, or were, lawfully wedded to the child’s mother during the period between conception and birth.

For employed individuals: You have rendered continuous service to your employer for a minimum of 3 months before your child’s birth.

For self-employed individuals: You have been engaged in your profession or business for a consecutive period of at least 3 months before your child’s birth, and have encountered income loss during the paternity leave duration.

Here are the requirements for adoptive fathers:

  • Your child holds Singaporean citizenship.
  • For employed individuals: You’ve maintained continuous employment with your employer for at least 3 months before formalising your intent to adopt.
  • For self-employed individuals: You’ve been actively involved in your work for at least 3 consecutive months before formalising your intent to adopt, and you’ve experienced income loss during the paternity leave period.

How Many Days of Paternity Leave Are Available in Singapore?

From January 1, 2024, the Singaporean government doubled their paternity leave from 2 to 4 weeks for eligible fathers of children born from 1 January 2024 onwards. Employers may grant an additional two weeks of GPPL voluntarily, and the government will reimburse them.

However, your GPPL entitlement per week depends on your number of working days in a week. If, for instance, you work 6 days per week—you’ll get 12 days of GPPL. 

You may also be able to take 4 weeks of shared parental leave

It’s essential to note that the number of days for paternity leave may be subject to revisions, so it’s advisable to stay updated with the latest regulations. You can always speak with your employer to find out more. 

How Can Paternity Leave Be Claimed in Singapore?

Claiming paternity leave Singapore typically involves informing the employer in advance of the expected date of birth or adoption. 

You may need to submit relevant documentation—such as the child’s birth certificate or adoption papers—to your employer or the Ministry of Manpower (MOM). 

Employers may have specific procedures in place for requesting paternity leave, which you should follow to ensure a smooth process.You can visit the Government-Paid Leave Portal (GPL) for more information. Alternatively, check out the Made For Families website for more details.

How Does Paternity Leave in Singapore Compare with Maternity Leave Benefits?

Although GPPL provides fathers with the opportunity to be involved in childcare responsibilities, maternity leave benefits in Singapore are more extensive. 

For instance, mothers are entitled to 16 weeks of maternity leave; this offers them more time to recover from childbirth, establish breastfeeding, and care for the newborn. 

Additionally, maternity leave may include provisions for prenatal medical appointments and postnatal care. 

Here are the requirements for maternity leave in Singapore:

  • Your child holds Singaporean citizenship.
  • If you’re an employee—you’ve maintained a continuous tenure with your employer for a minimum of 3 months before your child’s birth.
  • For self-employed individuals, you’ve been actively involved in your work for at least 3 consecutive months and have experienced income loss during the paternity leave period.

However, the Singaporean government has been taking steps to enhance paternity leave benefits, recognizing the importance of promoting shared parental responsibilities and gender equality in caregiving.

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Glossary Terms

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