Maternity leave
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Increased maternity leave takes effect in Hong Kong in December: what will change?

Hong Kong
Written by
Lewis Silkin, a specialist employment law practice in Hong Kong.
Hong Kong’s enhanced maternity leave provisions take effect on 11 December 2020. This article provides details.

The Employment (Amendment) Ordinance 2020 (the ‘Ordinance) will come into effect on 11 December 2020. One of the key changes to be brought in under this statute is the increase in maternity leave entitlement for eligible female employees: statutory paid maternity leave will increase from ten weeks to 14 weeks. This means that eligible female employees who actually give birth on or after 11 December 2020 will be entitled to the extended period of maternity leave. 

Who is eligible?  

Female employees employed under a continuous employment contract for no less than 40 weeks and who satisfy the requisite notification requirements will be eligible. 

How will the additional four weeks of maternity leave be calculated and who will pay for it?  

The calculation of maternity leave pay will remain unchanged but: 

  • a cap of HKD80,000 per employee will be imposed for the additional four weeks’ leave; and  
  • employers may seek reimbursement from the government for these additional four weeks. Details of this reimbursement scheme are yet to be announced. 


Further information: Please see the Enhancement to maternity leave benefits section of our previous update for more details on this change and other key changes that will be brought about by the Ordinance. 

 Action point 

Employers should update their internal policies and procedures to reflect the changes.  

Kathryn Weaver
Partner - Hong Kong
Lewis Silkin (Hong Kong)
Katy Lee
Legal Assistant - Hong Kong
Lewis Silkin (Hong Kong)