In this article, we will throw a light on the different types of paid leave offered by the companies in the UK. 

But, before we move ahead with the distinct types of paid leave, let’s first understand the types of leave format that is divided in two types:

  1. Paid leave 
  2. Unpaid leave

So, let’s take a tour of these 2 major leave formats and get a clear idea before we proceed in-depth on the topic. 

What Is Paid Leave?

The concept of paid leave implies when you take time off from work for personal reasons, illness, vacations, or any other reason that entails a wage replacement. 

A private or government employee is entitled to a certain no. of paid leaves provided by the organisation for the year. The leave can be utilised according to the company’s leave policy, regardless of whether they are employed in the private or public sector. 

Various employers prefer to offer an allotment amount of paid leave to their team to ensure they remain financially balanced and stable during the time away from their work responsibilities.  

Some companies prefer to propose to their employees a set number of paid leave hours that they can utilise for any personal instances. 

Others authorise their employees to accumulate this paid leave over time based on how many days and hours they perform. 

Now you review your company’s handbook to determine how many hours of paid leave you’re allotted.

What Is Unpaid Leave? 

Unpaid leave can be described as the extended-time period your employers permit you to take off of work without providing you with any remuneration during that particular time phrase. 

But, in case your reason for time off is considered under the “Family and Medical Leave  Act, 1993, then you will be allowed certain extended days of unpaid leaves without affecting your job or position in the company. 

Some employers let you put your accrued holiday time toward your leave of absence. If your holiday hours run out and you still need more days to remain on leave, the rest of that time will typically be unpaid.

Type Of Paid Leave

Maternity Leave 

Maternity leave is the time off work endowed to an employee before and after giving birth. The utmost an employee can take off is 52 weeks of maternity leave. 

Maternity leave is classified into two types: 

  1. Ordinary maternity leave: This type of maternity leave covers the first 26 weeks of pregnancy.
  2. Additional maternity leave: This type of leave covers the second 26 weeks of pregnancy. 

Unless the baby is delivered early, the most premature leave an employee can take is 11 weeks before the time of due date. Also, an employee can take at least two-four weeks of leave post-delivery, especially if she is a factory worker.  

Under UK Law: Qualified employees can acquire statutory maternity pay for up to 39 weeks.

Usually, they will obtain 90% of their moderate weekly earnings before tax for the first six weeks, heeded by £148.68 or 90% of their average weekly earnings (whichever is lower) for the rest of 33 weeks.

Paternity Leave

Paternity leave is the time off work given to an employee if they and their partner will have a baby, adopt a child, or have a baby through a surrogacy approach.

The most an employee can take off is two weeks:

  1. A worker or an employee can decide to take one week or two straight weeks of leave. 
  2. If an employee has more additional children than one child, e.g. twins or triplets, the duration of time remains the same.

Under UK Law: Qualified employees obtain statutory paternity revenue of either £148.68 per week or 90% of their average weekly earnings: whichever is more inferior.

Sick Leave 

Paid sick leave, also termed as “statutory sick pay” (SSP), is a type of paid leave wherein you pay the employee for being sick for more than four consecutive days. 

This can also count the non-working days if it is mentioned in the organisation’s leave policy. 

And when the employee starts working from the 4th qualifying day, the company starts paying him/her statutory sick pay. 

Under UK Law: Suitable employees receive statutory sick pay of £94.25 for 28 weeks


No matter what this contemporary business world demands, it is not in your hands to oversee employees from taking leave, whether paid or unpaid. 

What is in your hands is to control and track these employee leaves accurately without any human error. 

Yes, you read it right! ScheduleLeave’s staff holiday planner software drives it super uncomplicated and convenient. To find out more, read our article: What Makes ScheduleLeave The Best Absence Management Software?