A new scheme for Shared Parental Leave (SPL) will be available in respect of children whose expected week of childbirth (EWC) begins on or after 5 April 2015 or who are placed for adoption on or after that date. The effect of the new legislation is to give parents more flexibility in sharing care for the first year following birth or adoption. The mother or adopter can share some of the leave with her partner, perhaps returning to work part-time and then resuming leave at a later date.