Paternity leave

Paternity leave benefits are given to married male employees whose legal wife underwent delivery or miscarriage. The benefit applies to all male employee regardless of employment status. The benefit consists of seven (7) days of leave credits with full pay.

1. Concept

Paternity leave benefits are leave credits extended to married male employees “for purposes of enabling him to effectively lend support to his wife in her period of recovery and/or in the nursing of the newly-born child” (Sec. 3, R.A. 8187).

The paternity leave benefits apply to male employees regardless of their employment status (e.g. regular, probationary, casual, project, seasonal, fixed-term).

2. The Benefit

The benefit consists of seven (7) days of leave credits with full pay.

The Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), through issuances, has interpreted the benefit as seven (7) calendar days, and not working days.

The benefit applies to the first four (4) deliveries of the male employee’s legal wife, with whom he is cohabiting.

The term “cohabiting” refers to the obligation of the husband and wife to live together unless there is a justifying circumstance for them living separately. This may include situations wherein either one of them may be required to live elsewhere due to work (e.g. deployment, overseas work, etc.), as well as due to medical reasons such as when either one of them has to be admitted to a hospital for his/her protection from diseases or be quarantined to avoid the spread of a communicable disease.

3. The Computation

The leave credit is equal to the basic salary, including mandatory and/or integrated allowances. The pay shall not be less than the minimum wage.

4. Usage

The law requires that as a condition for the entitlement of the benefit that the male employee’s wife has given birth or suffered as a miscarriage. Hence, the paternity leave benefit is used after the delivery or miscarriage.

5. Conditions for entitlement

The following are the conditions for entitlement:

1) He is an employee at the time of the delivery;

2) He is cohabiting with his spouse at the time that she gives birth or suffers a miscarriage;

3) He has applied for paternity leave with his employer within a reasonable period of time from the expected date of delivery by his pregnant spouse, or within such period as may be provided by company rules and regulations, or by collective bargaining agreement; and,

4) His wife has given birth or suffered a miscarriage.

6. Application

The application should be made within a reasonable period of time to give the employer an opportunity to make adjustments while the male employee is on leave.

However, for miscarriage, prior application is not required.

7. Non-convertible to cash

The benefit is not convertible to cash. This means that the covered male employee is unable to convert to cash the leave credits if they are unused by the end of the year – unlike service incentive leaves. That is because the purpose of the paternity leave credits is to afford the covered male employee the opportunity to attend to his legitimate wife after her pregnancy.

8. Non-cumulative

The benefit is not cumulative, i.e. unused benefit cannot be added to the next delivery or miscarriage.

The benefit is not cumulative. This means that the covered male employee cannot add the unused leave credits to a subsequent delivery by his legitimate wife.

9. Employment contract, company policies, CBA

The above discussion may be superseded by any stipulation favorable to the employee via an employment contract, company policies, collective bargaining agreement, or analogous thereto.


Republic Act No. 8187, a.k.a. Paternity Leave Act of 199

2022 DOLE-BWC Handbook on Workers’ Statutory Monetary Benefits

/Updated: February 12, 2023

Disclaimer: All information is for educational and general information only. These should not be taken as professional legal advice or opinion. Please consult a competent lawyer to address your specific concerns. Any statements or opinions of the author are solely his own and do not reflect that of any organization he may be connected.

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