Adoption: parental rights

Adoption and permanent foster care entitle parents to access work and family life reconciliation schemes and grants

Parents that adopt or permanently foster a child can request the same reconciliation options and grants as biological parents. However, there are certain different measures to facilitate adoptions.

Labor rights for parents:

Maternity leave

Adopting or permanently fostering a child under the age of 6 years, or a minor under the age of 18 years with a disability or family integration problems, entitles the parent to receive 16 weeks of leave from work during which time the worker will earn 100% of the regulatory base (a daily amount calculated by dividing the salary before tax by 30 days).

  • If the minor has any type of disability, the leave is extended to 18 weeks.
  • For multiple adoptions, there are an additional 2 weeks for each child after the second.
  • As there is no postnatal recovery period, the mother can choose to transfer the entire parental leave to the father or share it with him. In other words, both parents can be on leave simultaneously or one after the other.
  • The leave can be taken in full or as a reduction in working hours upon agreement with the employer.
  • For international adoptions, if the parents have to travel to the baby's place of birth, the leave can start up to 4 weeks before the issuance of the resolution authorizing the adoption.

In addition to the usual paperwork, to request parental leave, you must provide:

  • The court resolution authorizing the adoption or guardianship, or the administrative or judicial resolution authorizing the foster care placement for longer than one year.
  • If the parents have to travel to the child's place of birth, the documentation from the competent body of the autonomous community demonstrating that the adoption or fostering procedures have been initiated.
  • A certificate proving that the child has a disability (if applicable).

Paternity leave

The father is entitled to 4 weeks of paid leave for each adoption or permanent foster care of a child under the age of 6 years. For multiple adoptions and foster care placements, the leave can be extended by 2 days for each child after the second.

  • The leave can be taken in full or as a reduction in working hours upon agreement with the employer.
  • To request paternity leave, you must submit the same documentation as for maternity leave.

Breastfeeding breaks

If the adopted baby is under 9 months old, one of the parents can request breastfeeding leave enabling them to take an hour break at the start or end of the full or reduced working day to feed the baby. If stipulated in the collective agreement or agreed upon with the company, breastfeeding leave can be saved up and used as days off (equating the 15 days) to extend the parental leave.

Reduced working hours and leaves of absence

Adoptive parents can also request a reduction in working hours with a proportional reduction in salary until the child reaches the age of 12 years old. Similarly, they can request a leave of absence (3 years maximum) to look after their children.

For adoptions and permanent foster care placements, the mother can transfer the entire leave to the father