My finances, my projects, my life
December 7, 2023

Parental leave: who, what, how, how much?

  Compiled by myLIFE team me&myFAMILY April 19, 2017 14940

On 1 December 2016, the terms of parental leave were amended to allow parents to strike a better balance between family and work life. Many benefits were introduced, including greater flexibility and higher pay.

Parental leave is an opportunity to take a break or reduce your workload and devote yourself to your child at important stages in their development. The changes made on 1 December 2016 make it even easier to take this leave.

Who can take parental leave?

Basically, any (future) parent who pursues a gainful activity (at least 10h/week) and who has been affiliated to the Luxembourg social security system without interruption for at least 12 continuous months immediately preceding the beginning of the parental leave.

What are the options?

Both parents can take parental leave.

  • The “first parental leave” must be taken immediately after the maternity or adoption leave. Although your employer cannot refuse or delay the first leave, it has the right to insist that this parental leave is taken full time.
  • The “second parental leave” must be taken by the other parent before the child’s sixth birthday (12th birthday in the case of adoption). Your employer cannot refuse this second leave, but has the right to insist that the parental leave is taken full time and may postpone it under certain conditions.

Parental leave is granted once per parent per child. You cannot transfer your right to parental leave to your partner for them to take parental leave twice for the same child.

On 1 December 2016, greater flexibility was introduced in the terms of how this leave can be taken. Options vary according to your number of hours:

Full-time parental leave of 4 or 6 months
Half-time parental leave of 8 or 12 months
Parental leave of one day per week for up to 20 months
Split parental leave: Four months over a maximum period of 20 months

How to submit your request?

Your request should be sent to your employer on paper, by registered letter with acknowledgement of receipt, at least two months before the start of the maternity leave for the first parental leave, and at least four months before the start of the second parental leave. Your request must specify the type of parental leave (first or second) and arrangement sought (stating the desired timetable for your working hours if you are not taking full-time leave).


Throughout your parental leave, you receive a “substitute income” paid by the Caisse pour l’Avenir des Enfants (CAE). As with a salary, social security and tax must be paid on this income. Its amount varies according to your salary, the number of hours worked each week, and the arrangement chosen.

For example, if you work full-time and take full-time parental leave, the gross amount of your substitute income will currently be:

  • equivalent to your current salary if this is between EUR2,570.93 and EUR4,284.88;
  • EUR4,284.88 if your gross monthly salary is higher than this amount.

It should be noted that the amount of your pay is determined on the basis of the average monthly wage received over the 12 months leading up to your parental leave. If your income changes after the parental leave starts, then your pay will be recalculated.

The CAE provides a simulator, which allows you to quickly calculate the substitute income to which you are entitled.