Adoption leave is granted to couples who adopt one or more children under the age of 12.
Adoption leave enables one partner to stay at home in order to take care of the recently adopted child(ren).
Any employee or self-employed worker who adopts one or more children (who must be under 12 years old) is entitled to adoption leave. However, this type of leave can only be granted to one of the adoptive parents.
If both parents meet the requirements for adoption leave, they must decide which one will take the leave.
If only one of the partners qualifies, then they alone will be entitled to the leave.
The person who does not qualify for adoption leave will be entitled to 10 days of special leave (or longer, depending on the terms of the collective agreement adopted by their company).
At the end of the adoption leave, both parents may take parental leave.
In order to be granted adoption leave and receive social benefits, the employee or self-employed worker must have been:
An employee who wishes to take adoption leave must:
In the case of adoption by a single-parent family, the employer must return the original copy of the tax card to the employee, so that they can send it back to the competent tax office, along with the court-issued adoption order, to have the tax class changed.
Self-employed workers who wish to take adoption leave must submit the adoption application or the letter of approval to proceed to the CNS, together with their contact details and the start date of their adoption leave.
The CNS will then send them a 'declaration of honour' (attestation sur l'honneur) form, which must be completed, signed and returned to the CNS. On that form, the applicant must:
Adoption leave is granted for 12 weeks from the start date communicated to the CNS.
During the adoption leave, the employee or self-employed worker is entitled to an allowance paid by the CNS. The amount of the adoption allowance is determined in the same way as sickness allowance.
The amount of the allowance is:
The financial allowance cannot be:
The financial allowance cannot be combined with:
While on adoption leave, employees on permanent contracts are protected against dismissal throughout the entire period of leave, as well as, where applicable, during full-time parental leave.
If they are still on a trial period, the trial will be suspended from the day on which the employee submits the court order to their employer.
The remaining duration of the trial period will resume when the employee's protection against dismissal expires.
In the case of a fixed-term employment contract, the trial period will not be suspended, nor will the fixed-term contract be extended. The contract will expire as normal at the end of the initial term.
During adoption leave, the employer must not deregister the employee from the Joint Social Security Centre (Centre commun de la sécurité sociale - CCSS).
Additionally, the employer must:
The CNS will receive the information required to pay out the adoption allowance from the CCSS.
While the employee is on leave, their employer may not dismiss them with notice, or summon them to a pre-dismissal interview.
If the employer decides to dismiss the employee in contravention of this prohibition, then the employee on adoption leave may apply to the President of the Labour Tribunal to have their dismissal annulled. The application to have the dismissal annulled must be filed within 15 days of the termination of the employment contract by the employer.
The employer must apply to the labour tribunal for authorisation to terminate the employment contract. The tribunal will assess the seriousness of the misconduct in question. The tribunal will decide whether or not to validate the employee's immediate suspension and, if validated, will pronounce the termination of the employee's contract. In the event of unfair dismissal without a suspension in the conditions stated above, the president of the tribunal will order the reinstatement of the employee into the business.
Adoption leave is considered as a period of effective work, which means:
Employees who do not wish to return to work at the end of the adoption leave, in order to take care of their child, can resign without notice and without having to pay compensation for breach of contract. Resigning in this way, without notice, does not apply to employees who simply wish to change employers at the end of their adoption leave.
In addition, they can ask to be given priority for re-employment in the year following the end of their adoption leave. The request must be sent by registered letter with acknowledgement of receipt. Having received such a request, the employer will then be required, for one year, to prioritise the employee when hiring for positions for which they are qualified. If and when they are re-employed, the employee must receive the same benefits that they enjoyed at the time of leaving the business.
At the end of the adoption leave, both parents are entitled to part-time or full-time parental leave.
If the employee decides to go on full-time parental leave, their employment contract will be suspended in full, and the employer must deregister the employee from the social security services.