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Cyprus paternity leave law comes into force

A new law giving fathers in Cyprus the right to two weeks paid paternity leave has come into force.

Speaking to state radio, Social Insurance Services official Christina Hadjinicolaou explained that as well as births and adoptions occurring as of today onwards, anyone else whose child was born or adopted within the past 16 weeks is also eligible to apply.

Fathers must submit the application for the relevant subsidy to the Services within 21 days of the start of their paternity leave.

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“Paternity leave is for two consecutive weeks and can only be taken within 16 weeks of the child’s birth or date of adoption,” Hadjinicolaou said, adding that fathers would, like mothers on maternity leave, be paid 72% of their weekly wages for those two weeks.

“The law, as it does with mothers, protects a father’s right to paid paternity leave…There has already been a lot of interest.”

A father should inform his employers of his intention to use the right at least 15 days in advance of when he plans to do so. They must also be contributors to Cyprus’ social insurance system and also be either married or have entered into a civil union with the child’s mother to be eligible.

Necessary documents accompanying application forms, which are available on the services’ website, include the child’s birth certificate, and where applicable adoption documentation, and a marriage or civil union certificate.

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