The birth of a baby is a significant event for both parents. It requires careful preparation and handling of essential personal and administrative tasks. In this article, you will find all the necessary information about applying for maternity leave, accessing maternity benefits, choosing the best classes for future parents, undergoing medical examinations, and more.
What is maternity leave and who is eligible for it in Luxembourg
Maternity leave is a period of time off from work for pregnant women or mothers who have just given birth. In Luxembourg, maternity leave is regulated by the Labour Code (Le code du travail) which outlines the responsibilities of employers and the rights and protections for pregnant and nursing women in the workplace.
Luxembourg's all-encompassing social security system covers employees, providing benefits for illness, and workplace accidents, as well as maternity, old age, disability, unemployment, early retirement, and family benefits. The system is overseen by the Ministry of Social Security and the Inspectorate General of Social Security, with contributions from insured individuals and public authorities coming through the CCSS (Centre Commun de la Sécurité Sociale).
To be eligible for maternity leave, pregnant women need to be enrolled in the state health insurance system for a minimum of 6 months within the year before the start of maternity leave.
To qualify for benefits, pregnant women must be:
- covered by the social insurance system;
- working as an employee, self-employed worker, or apprentice;
- not eligible for more advantageous legal or agreed-upon conditions.
How to apply for maternity leave
Applying for maternity leave in Luxembourg is a common and widely supported process. It can be completed by following a few simple steps.
It can be completed by following a few simple steps
- Notify your employer
Women are free to inform their employer of their pregnancy whenever they wish. However, according to Luxembourgish law, you must inform your employer in writing at least 2 months before you plan to start maternity leave.
- Obtain a medical certificate
You can get a medical certificate confirming your pregnancy from your doctor or midwife. It must specify the expected due date and prove confirmation that you are fit for work until the start of your maternity leave.
- Submit the application for maternity leave
To apply for maternity leave, you need to complete an application form which can be obtained from your employer or the National Health Fund (Caisse Nationale de Santé - CNS).
Submit the application to your employer or the National Health Fund (CNS) at least two months before you plan to start your maternity leave. After your application has been processed, you will receive confirmation of your maternity leave.
How the law protects pregnant women
The law prohibits any form of discrimination against pregnant women and new mothers in the workplace. This includes protection against dismissal during pregnancy and for 12 weeks following the end of maternity leave.
Pregnant women also have the right to take time off work for antenatal appointments without loss of pay. This includes medical examinations, tests, and ultrasound scans related to pregnancy and childbirth.
Employers are also required to ensure that pregnant women are not exposed to any hazardous substances or activities in the workplace that could harm their health or that of their unborn child.
If necessary, employers must adjust the work conditions or duties of pregnant women to ensure their safety.
What needs to be done before giving birth
There are several steps that a pregnant woman should take before the birth of her child. Overall, they consist of undergoing several medical examinations during the whole pregnancy, going through theoretical and practical courses for young parents and, of course, planning the birth and first few months of life with a newborn.
And if the last one is usually a pleasant time, like shopping for cute tiny socks, or choosing the name, other parts can bring some questions. Let's answer them.
Pregnancy and necessary medical examinations
It is recommended that pregnant women attend the following examinations with a specialist. We have previously covered the topics of Healthcare in the Grand Duchy and options for choosing a professional in Luxembourg.
|1st medical exam||Before the end of third month (12 weeks)|
|2nd medical exam||Before the end of fourth month (16 weeks)|
|3d medical exam||Before the end of sixth month (24 weeks)|
|4th medical exam||At the beginning of eighth month (29 weeks)|
|5th medical exam||At the beginning of nineth month (33 weeks)|
|Dental examination||Before the end of fifth month (20 weeks)|
Pregnant women may attend all medical examinations during working hours, without loss of pay. This is protected by the law.
Theoretical and practical courses for pregnant women in Luxembourg
Pregnant women are encouraged to attend various courses and educational programs to ensure a healthy pregnancy, prepare for childbirth, and acquire knowledge and skills related to caring for their newborn. These courses provide valuable information, support, and guidance to expectant mothers and their partners.
Pregnancy courses offer essential information about prenatal care, proper nutrition, exercise, and self-care during pregnancy, information about the stages of labor, pain management techniques, breathing and relaxation techniques, and newborn care.
There are several approaches to education for expecting parents. Typically, these courses can be offered in various formats, such as group classes, private sessions, online courses, or a combination of in-person and virtual instruction. They are conducted by healthcare professionals, childbirth educators, or experienced instructors who specialize in prenatal and postnatal education.
Organizations that help expecting mothers
There are a lot of services, that support motherhood in Luxembourg. The main governmental structures, that cover the family and motherhood are the Ministry of Family Affairs, Integration and the Greater Region and the Ministry of Equality between Women and Men.
The Initiativ Liewensufank is a counseling center for expectant and new parents. They can ask any questions they may have about pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, and parenthood.
They also provide free information and consultations (by phone or email) on all issues related to pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, life with babies, and so on.
The organization aims to promote health and fitness for expectant and new parents. FitParents offers a range of fitness and wellness classes for pregnant women, new mothers, and fathers. Their programs include prenatal yoga, postnatal fitness classes, and educational workshops.
Chose a trial or a one-off class
What happens after the birth of a child in Luxembourg
After giving birth in Luxembourg, there are several standard procedures and services that are typically provided to new mothers and their babies.
Of course, first of all, if you decide to give birth at the hospital, you will have a hospital stay. In Luxembourg, the average hospital stay after a normal vaginal delivery is around three to four days. For cesarean sections or if there are any complications, the hospital stay may be longer to ensure proper recovery and monitoring.
During the hospital stay, new mothers receive postpartum care and support. The newborn baby also receives medical attention. Pediatricians or neonatologists will perform a thorough examination of the baby to check for overall health, perform necessary tests and provide guidance on feeding and care.
Luxembourg encourages and promotes breastfeeding. Therefore, new mothers are typically offered assistance and support with breastfeeding during their hospital stay.
Registration of the newborn
In Luxembourg, it is a legal requirement to declare all births to the civil registrar of the commune where the birth occurred. This declaration must be made within 10 days following the birth, excluding the day of the birth itself.
It is important for parents to promptly complete the necessary paperwork and provide the required documentation to register their child's birth.
For maried parents
– The birth notice from a doctor;
For unmarried parents
– The birth notice from a doctor;
After the delivery, a copy of the newborn's birth certificate must be submitted to various places. The birth registry office will give you 8 copies. You typically must bring them to the employer, commune, CAE with allowance application, and CNS – Service Indemnités Pécuniaires to the Financial benefits department.
Address: 125, route d'Esch, Luxembourg
Phone: (+352) 27 57 - 1
Other copies might be submitted depending on the case: for example, to the embassy, insurance company, housing authorities for benefits, etc.
Maternity and parental leave
Luxembourg has generous parental leave policies. Mothers are entitled to a mandatory maternity leave period of at least 8 weeks before the expected due date and up to 16 weeks after giving birth. Fathers can also take paternity leave, and both parents have the option to take additional parental leave for an extended period to care for their newborn.
Maternity leave must start no later than the day after the birth of your baby. This maternity leave calculator will help you estimate the key dates of your maternity leave.
Both parents can take parental leave, which can be taken in a flexible manner until the child reaches the age of five. During parental leave, employees are not paid by their employer but can receive financial support from the government. Father is eligible for at least, depending on the circumstances of the working contract and collective agreement.
To be eligible for parental leave, employees must have been employed for at least 12 months and must have worked for their current employer for at least 6 months.
Postpartum medical appointments
Postpartum medical appointments are an essential part of ensuring the health and well-being of both mother and baby after delivery. In Luxembourg, new mothers have access to several medical appointments as part of the postpartum care process.
A home visit by a midwife
A postpartum visit to a gynecologist
This appointment typically takes place six weeks after delivery. The doctor will check on the mother's physical recovery after childbirth and for any signs of infection or complications, as well as discuss any concerns or issues related to the postpartum period.
Pregnancy and work in the Grand Duchy
Balancing pregnancy and work in Luxembourg is facilitated by the country's supportive policies and regulations. By understanding your rights, communicating with your employer, and accessing available resources, you can navigate this journey with confidence and peace of mind. Remember to prioritize your health and well-being while preparing for the exciting adventure of motherhood.
Hiring when pregnant in Luxembourg
In Luxembourg, it is illegal for employers to discriminate against job applicants based on pregnancy or maternity-related reasons. The law prohibits employers from denying employment opportunities, refusing to hire, or treating candidates unfavorably due to their pregnancy status.
Pregnant women are not obligated to disclose their pregnancy during a job application process, and if asked, they can choose not to reveal it.
Pregnancy is considered a private matter in Luxembourg. However, maternity protection begins to apply only after a pregnant woman informs her employer about her pregnancy.
If you believe you have been subject to pregnancy-related discrimination during the hiring process, you have the right to file a complaint with the Inspectorate of Labour and Mines. They can investigate the matter and take appropriate action to address any violations of employment laws.
Maintaining the employment relationship
When a woman gets pregnant and takes a maternity leave her employment contract is maintained and maternity leave is considered as a period of actual work.
The employer is required to:
- count in maternity leave when computing the amount of annual leave due — unclaimed before maternity leave annual leave time may be postponed until 31 March of the next year;
- take the employee's maternity leave into consideration when computing their seniority and related benefits;
- maintain the position of the employee during her maternity leave or propose a comparable role based on her skills and experience with a salary that is equivalent to her current level;
- maintain any benefits accrued by the employee before her maternity leave;
- allow her to benefit from any improvements in working conditions introduced during her maternity leave.
Termination of the working relationship
If the employee does not wish to return to work at the end of her maternity leave to look after her child, she can resign without notice without having to pay a termination fee for breach of contract.
To terminate the working relationship after the maternity leave, you will need to submit a special resignation letter to your employer.
However, this option is not available for those who plan to switch to a new employer after their maternity leave.
Return to work after maternity leave
Returning to work after maternity leave is a significant transition for new mothers in Luxembourg. The country has established regulations and policies to support a smooth reintegration into the workforce while ensuring the well-being of both the mother and the child.
After maternity leave, a woman has the right to return to her job or an equivalent position with the same pay and benefits.
In Luxembourg, employees have the right to request a gradual return to work or flexible work arrangements after maternity leave. This may include options such as part-time work, telecommuting, or adjusted work hours. Discuss these possibilities with your employer to find a mutually beneficial arrangement that allows for a smooth transition while maintaining a work-life balance.
Maternity leave benefits in Luxembourg
During maternity leave, mothers are entitled to receive a benefit to ensure financial support for the time, when they will be taking care of a newborn in Luxembourg. This benefit is based on the woman's salary and is paid for a maximum of 16 weeks. Employers are required to maintain the woman's social security and health insurance during her absence.
These maternity benefits are provided by the CNS (Caisse Nationale de Santé) and not by the employer.
The calculation of maternity benefits is based on a few factors for women who are salaried workers:
- The highest salary received in the three months preceding the start of maternity leave.
- Additionally, if applicable, the average amount of complementary and accessory benefits received in the 12 months preceding the month before the start of maternity leave.
For women who are self-employed, the benefit is calculated on the contribution base in force at the time maternity leave is announced. In the case of part-time work, the threshold for calculating benefits is based on the hourly social minimum wage.
There are still certain limitations to the financial maternity benefits:
- The benefits cannot be less than the social minimum wage.
- The benefits cannot exceed five times the social minimum wage.
How to get maternity benefits
To get maternity benefits women must submit a medical certificate and a statement from their employer confirming their employment and the expected start and end dates of their leave to the National Health Fund (CNS).
In order to receive maternity allowances, you will also need to send the special form to the CAE (Children's Future Fund) within 2 weeks of notifying the employer. You can download the example of this application below.
The maternity allowance in Luxembourg is 1740.09 euros and is paid in three equal installments of 580.03 euros. Criteria for eligibility for state aid for childbirth usually differ for expats and residents.
We have devoted special articles of our Knowlege Library to the topic of maternity and family benefits and incentives, that Luxembourg state usually provides. Read them to get more specific information about the financial aid you can count on: "How to get family allowances" and "How to get maternity benefits".
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
How long is maternity leave in Luxembourg
Is parental leave compensated in Luxembourg
What are the maternity rights in Luxembourg
We took photos from these sources: Camylla Battani for Unsplash, Photo by Initiativ Liewensufank on Google Maps, Photo by FitParents on Google Maps, Image by Luxtoday