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We have a full time employee who is suffering a pregnancy related illness – her treating doctor has recommended she continues to work, but in a reduced capacity. The employee would like to reduce her hours of work to part-time from now until commencement of her unpaid parental leave. Is this Special Maternity Leave? And, can we simply agree to a temporary reduction in hours on the basis of her pregnancy related illness?

Frequenty Asked Questions

We have a full time employee who is suffering a pregnancy related illness – her treating doctor has recommended she continues to work, but in a reduced capacity. The employee would like to reduce her hours of work to part-time from now until commencement of her unpaid parental leave. Is this Special Maternity Leave? And, can we simply agree to a temporary reduction in hours on the basis of her pregnancy related illness?

This is not ‘special maternity leave’ as provided under the Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth) (FW Act) – special maternity leave requires that the employee be unable to work at all due to a pregnancy related illness.

If a pregnant employee cannot perform her job safely because of pregnancy-related illness, but has capacity to perform some work you should transfer her to a safe job (which may include part time work or alternative duties). If you don’t have the ability to provide a safe job for her then you should place this employee on paid ‘no safe job leave’.

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