For men living in Hong Kong, it is essential to understand the rights and privileges that you have for taking paternity leave to help care for and provide for your new child and family during the early days of childbirth.

However, Hong Kong paternity leave policy can be confusing and complicated. As such, it is vital that you understand the rules and are able to communicate clearly with your employer to ensure compliance with the Hong Kong Employment Ordinance. In this article, we will discuss the basics of Hong Kong paternity leave and what to expect when applying for paternity leave with your employer or company.

What You Need To Know About Hong Kong Paternity Leave

What You Will Learn:
  1. Hong Kong paternity leave eligibility criteria
  2. How to apply for Hong Kong paternity leave
  3. How much is Hong Kong paternity leave and how it is calculated
  4. Plan today to prepare for tomorrow
  5. Hong Kong employer considerations
Who Is Eligible For Hong Kong Paternity Leave?

Any male employee in Hong Kong is eligible to take up to five days of paid Hong Kong paternity leave. In order for a male employee to be eligible for paid paternity leave, they must:

  1. Be the father of a newborn child or is a father-to-be; and
  2. Has been employed by their current Hong Kong employer on an ongoing-contract basis and has worked there no less than 40 months; and
  3. Has given proper notification and applied for paid leave through their Hong Kong employer
How to Apply for Hong Kong Paternity Leave?

In order to make sure that one can claim their paternity leave, it is important to apply in advance. In general, a male employee who wishes to take paternity leave must notify their employer of their intention to take leave at least 3 months prior to the expected due date of their child (the exact date of leave is not required)

It is vital to note that an employee requesting paternity leave dates can request to have their days taken consecutively or separately. No matter how you choose to take your paternity leave, all days must all be taken within a period ranging from four weeks prior to the expected due date and 10 weeks following birth. This will help parents plan for the unexpected.

In many instances, it is common for a Hong Kong employer to request their employee provide a written signed statement that states the following:

  • The name of the child’s mother;
  • The expected / actual date of delivery of the child; and
  • That he is the child’s father
How Much is Hong Kong Paternity Leave Pay?

One question that many men have regarding paternity leave is in relation to the pay they can expect for when they claim paternity leave. Under the Hong Kong Employment Ordinance, paternity leave pay is equal to four-fifths of the average daily wage that an employee has earned with their employer across the past 12 months of employment. 

This amount is subject to the final approval of a Hong Kong employer, and may change based on a variety of factors. As such, it is essential that anyone willing to claim paternity leave speak with their employer to get a better feel for what daily pay you can expect while on leave.

Plan Today To Prepare For Tomorrow

Having a child is a huge change for any family, and requires quite a bit of careful planning and preparation. To ensure that you are not caught off guard by unexpected expenses or loss of potential income, it is important that you prepare early for your expected paternity leave. 

Speak with your employer to gain a clearer understanding of both the policy and expectations for paternity leave. By ensuring that you take the steps necessary to prepare for your paternity leave early, you can help bring peace of mind to you and your family as the day approaches for welcoming your new child into the world!

Considerations for Hong Kong Employers

It is the responsibility of a Hong Kong employer to understand the various forms of remuneration their staff are entitled to. Unfortunately, many entrepreneurs and business owners do not have the time to study the specifics of the various laws they are obligated to comply with and it is common that mistakes may be made during remuneration calculations. To avoid any penalties that arise in accordance with non-compliance, Hong Kong employers should take steps to engage a professional service provider who is knowledgeable on these areas of the Hong Kong Employment Ordinance.

FastLane HR is a dedicated Hong Kong based payroll and HR services specialist. Not only do we serve a broad spectrum of SMEs, we have obtained many years of experience in providing outsourced services for both local and foreign organisations.  We ensure that every aspect of your business complies with current regulations and ordinances. Please contact us for enquiries!