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Maternity Leave in Spain

An expectant mother is entitled to 16 weeks maternity leave in Spain and she is entitled to decide how to utilise them entirely apart from the fact that she must use 6 weeks herself after the birth.

The other 10 weeks the mother may distribute between herself and the father of the child as she wishes - either consecutively or simultaneously i.e. For example 5 weeks each.

If agreed by the employer or by the relevant Convenio, the 10 weeks may be distributed either on a full time basis or part time.

The new mother is entitled to receive the same pay as before she went on maternity leave and this is paid for by the department of Social Security. She must however have been registered with the Social Security office and have made payments for 180 days during the previous 5 years. This also applies to the father of the child if he wishes to avail of the maternity leave

Upon return to work the mother is entitled to a break for one hour or two half hour breaks for purposes of feeding the child until it is 9 months old. In practice employers tend to give one hour paid leave per day during this time.

A new mother also has the right to reduce her working week to between one third and one half of the pre-birth level with a commensurate reduction in pay.