Unpaid carers leave

From 6 April 2024, employees will be entitled to unpaid leave to give or arrange care for a ‘dependant’ who has a long-term care need.

Dependant: a spouse, partner, child, grandchild, parent, or someone who depends on you for care (they do not have to be a family member). Long-term care need: a physical or mental illness or injury that means they’re expected to need care for more than 3 months.a disability (as defined in the Equality Act 2010);has care needs because of their old age.

Quick Overview

Carers leave is available to eligible employees from the first day of employment.

You can take up to one week of leave in every 12 months. A ‘week’ is relevant to your usual work over 7 days. For example, if you usually work 3 days a week, you can take 3 days of carer’s leave.

Take a whole week off or take individual days or half days throughout the year.

Use the leave for planned care.

You do not need to give evidence of your dependant’s care needs.

Your employment rights are protected during Carers Leave for example: protection from dismissal and detrimental treatment.


If you care for more than one person, you cannot take a week of carer’s leave for each dependant. you can only take one week every 12 months. You can use the week of leave on more than one dependant.

You will need to give your employer notice before you want the leave to start. 

Carers Leave is Unpaid.

Remember as a carer you can make a request for flexible working and there are other forms of leave that you may be able to take, for example parental leave, time off for dependents and annual leave, check with your HR provider.

Find more info here Unpaid carer’s leave – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)