UCL Human Resources


After parental leave

UCL aims to support parents and carers in the work place. Listed below is some important information and support for employees returning to work after parental leave.

Annual leave

Annual leave accrues whilst you are on parental leave. You should try to take any accrued annual leave before you go on parental leave.

Employees have 12 months from their return to work date to use any annual leave that has been accrued whilst on parental leave. Most employees take accrued leave at the end of their parental leave, before returning to work.


UCL supports staff returning to work who wish to continue to breastfeed and express milk. Staff should inform their manager if they may be breastfeeding when they return to work and to discuss arrangements for expressing/breastfeeding and if a risk assessment would be required. Find more information on quiet rooms for expressing/breastfeeding.

Sabbatical leave for academic staff

UCL provides one term of sabbatical leave without teaching commitments for research-active academics returning from maternity, additional paternity, adoption or long-term carer's leave (this must be applied for prior to return or within four weeks of return). Find more information on sabbatical leave for academic staff.

Flexible working and career breaks

The Work-Life Balance Policy allows staff to request changes to their work such as reductions in hours worked, changes to times worked, compressed hours, working from home. Employees with two or more year’s service may request an unpaid career break of up to 12 months. 

Carer's leave allows for staff to care for sick children, for unforeseen breakdown in childcare arrangements and to take children to medical appointments. 

Childcare providers

For information on finding childcare see:

Assistance with childcare costs

Information on tax-free childcare and other government help with childcare costs is available at Childcare Choices.

Ordinary parental leave (unpaid leave)

Ordinary parental leave can be used by employees wanting to spend more time with their children, in order to balance work and family commitments. The entitlement is up to 18 weeks per child up to their 18th birthday, capped at a maximum of four weeks in any year. A parent (or other person with formal parental responsibility for a child under the age of 18) who has one year's continuous service with UCL, is entitled to apply for ordinary parental leave. See section 4.65 of the UCL Parental Leave and Pay Policy

PACT (Parents and Carers Together)

PACT is a network available to support all parents and carers.