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Dutch maternity leave

What maternity leave am I entitled to?

What other leaves-of-absence from work are there relating to my children?

The Dutch government provides several different arrangements to cover the rights for parents to take care of their child.

  • Emergency leave (calamiteitenverlof): Employees are entitled to a short leave, with salary, when the employee cannot work because of very exceptional personal circumstances. You can be entitled to emergency leave, for instance, if your child becomes ill and you have to care for him/her at home, or if the child is ill and you have to collect him/her from school.
  • Short-term care leave (kortdurend zorgverlof): In addition to emergency leave, short-term care leave is available to employees who have to look after a sick child, partner, family members or other persons living with them or a very close friend or neighbour; the employer must pay at least 70% of your salary.
  • Long-term care leave (langdurend zorgverlof): If necessary, the employee can ask for an extension to the short-term leave to continue caring for the same person. However, this leave is totally unpaid and can be taken all in one block or spread over a maximum period of 26 weeks.
  • Adoption leave (adoptieverlof): Parents adopting a child are entitled to a maximum of six weeks paid adoption leave. The same entitlement applies for foster parents, if it is clear from the start that the child will be joining the family on a permanent basis. Adoption leave can start up to four weeks prior to the handover of the child to the adoptive parents.
  • Ouderschapsverlof (parental leave) You are entitled to parental leave when you have been working for the same employer for at least one year and are caring for a child who is younger than eight. Both parents are entitled to parental leave. If you have more children, you may take parental leave for each child separately. You are also entitled to parental leave for your adopted children, foster children or stepchildren, provided the child is living with you. You are entitled to parental leave up to 26 times your weekly working hours. The normal arrangement is that for one yerar, you work half of your normal hours. For example, if you work 32 hours per week, then forone year you will work 16 hours per week together while taking 16 hours parental leave per week. Parental leave is unpaid. In addition, both parents are entitled to nine extra weeks of  parental leave. This leave will be partly paid.
  • Geboorteverlof is the official name for vaderschapsverlof (paternity leave) You are entitled to one full week of paid paternity leave within four weeks after the birth of the baby. In addition you can a take a maximum of five weeks extra paternity leave, which is partially paid. Before you are allowed to use these five weeks, you must have first used the week of paid leave. You must use the additional leave within six months after the birth. During the extra paternity leave, you don’t receive a salary but a the benefit from the UWV (Uitvoeringsinstituut Werknemersverzekeringen, Employee Insurance Agency). This is 70% of your salary. If your salary is higher than a certain maximum, you will receive 70% of this maximum. You can read more about this on (in Dutch only).

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