Are we obliged to keep an employee on a fixed term contract to cover an employee on maternity leave even if the employee on maternity leave chooses not return to work?

Posted in : First Tuesday Q&A ROI on 1 December 2015
Zelda Cunningham
Arthur Cox
Issues covered:

Generally, specified purpose/fixed term contracts are used by employers to cover employees on maternity leave. The specified purpose/fixed term contract will have an end date which provides that the employee’s employment will cease when the employee on maternity leave returns to work.

Employees on maternity leave have a statutory entitlement to return to the position (or a suitable alternative) that they held prior to going on maternity leave and therefore, it would be inappropriate for the employer to offer a permanent contract to an individual covering this leave.
If the employee on maternity leave resigns from employment on the expiry of her maternity leave, the employer can, if it so

Already a subscriber?

Click here to login and access the full article.

Don't miss out, register today!

Are you fully aware of the benefits of Legal-Island's Irish Employment Law Hub? We help thousands of people like you understand how the latest changes in Irish employment law impact your business through a mix of case law analysis and in-depth articles. All delivered right to your inbox.

We help you to understand the ramifications of each important case from Ireland and Europe.

We help you ensure that your organisation's policies and procedures are fully compliant with Irish law.

You will receive regular updates on Irish employment law including case law reviews, legislative changes, topical updates as well as answers to your burning questions through our Q&A feature.

You will have 24/7 access to the Employment Law Hub so you can research case law and HR issues when you need to.

Already a subscriber, now or Register

Back to Q&A's This article is correct at 01/12/2015

The information in this article is provided as part of Legal-Island's Employment Law Hub. We regret we are not able to respond to requests for specific legal or HR queries and recommend that professional advice is obtained before relying on information supplied anywhere within this article.

Zelda Cunningham
Arthur Cox

The main content of this article was provided by Zelda Cunningham. Contact telephone number is +353 1 618 0000 or email

View all articles by Zelda Cunningham