The Irish public service comprises the Civil Service, the Defence sector, the Education sector, the Justice sector, the Health sector, Local Authorities and the Non-Commercial State Agencies.
Each sector is a separate and distinct employer. Each of the sectors is regulated by the relevant Minister in accordance with the relevant legislation. The Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform regulates the Civil Service determining the terms and conditions of civil servants through Section 17 of the Civil Service Regulation Acts 1956 – 2005.
Under the Parental Leave Acts, both parents have an equal separate entitlement to parental leave. If both parents work for the same employer, and the employer agrees, 14 weeks of one parent’s parental leave entitlement may be transferred to the other (Civil Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Acts 2008, paragraph 72).
While civil servants are deemed to be employed by the same employer for the purposes of Parental Leave provisions, employees in local authorities have a different employer. Therefore, under legislation, parental leave cannot be transferred between parents employed in the Civil Service and a local authority.