Paid leave

Maternity leave | Breastfeeding leave | Paternity leave | Adoption leave | Leave for sick chidren

Maternity leave

Maternity leave lasts for four months and starts on the day the child is born.

After the birth of the child, just send a copy of the birth certificate to Human Resources.

During their maternity leave, UNIL staff members receive their full salary (with the exception of Student Assistants, whose leave lasts 14 weeks paid at a rate of 80 %). If you fulfil the conditions stipulated by the Loi sur les allocations perte de gain, you are entitled to maternity leave, even if you have only recently been employed by UNIL.

If you have a fixed-term contract, you benefit from the same maternity leave conditions of four months, provided that the child was born during the period covered by your contract with UNIL. If you give birth during the two weeks following the expiry of the contract (the date of the actual childbirth and not the due date being valid), you will also be entitled to the maternity leave of four months and your contract will then be extended until the expiry of the maternity leave or breastfeeding leave.


Replacement during maternity leave

The unit to which you are attached can, if necessary, replace you during your maternity/breastfeeding or other type of leave. Since the introduction of federal maternity insurance, the University of Lausanne receives the equivalent of 80% of the salary of women on maternity leave during a period of 14 weeks. The payment of the costs incurred for replacement staff is borne by the Faculties and Services concerned according to their budget.


Breastfeeding leave

If you are breastfeeding, you are entitled to one month of additional paid leave, after maternity leave. You must inform your superior and Human Resources of your intention to request this leave, at the latest at the end of the second month of maternity leave. You must also provide a medical certificate confirming the fact that you are breastfeeding (at the earliest at the beginning of the second month following childbirth and at the latest at the end of the maternity leave).

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Breastfeeding at UNIL

When you recommence your activity at the University of Lausanne, you will be accorded the time necessary for breastfeeding or expressing your milk. During your child’s first year, you can count this time as paid working time as indicated in the Ordonnance 1 relative à la Loi sur le travail (art. 60).

The UNIL Health Centre can provide you with premises, equipped with a refrigerator, where you can breastfeed or express your milk. Contact:, (021 692) 25 77, Anthropole 1056.


Paternity leave


As of 1 January 2021, 20 working days, pro rata to the activity rate, of paternity leave is granted:

- To the legal father OR
- To the partner or registered partner of the legal father, as well as to the partner or registered partner of the biological mother, when he or she is living in the same household as the legal father and provides for the care of the child.

Hourly paid staff, student assistants and private-docent do not benefit from the right to paternity leave as laid down in the Loi sur le personnel de l'Etat de Vaud. For these functions, only the legal father may benefit from allowances for loss of earnings, for a period of 2 weeks (10 working days), provided that he fulfils the conditions laid down in the Loi sur les allocations perte de gain (cf. art. 16k and 16l).


The leave may be taken as a whole, split up or in 20 separate days (provided that the proper functioning of the entity allows it), within six months of the child's birth.

The employee shall inform his or her superior when he or she becomes aware of the probable term of the pregnancy. As soon as possible, the employee shall inform his or her superior in writing of the dates and terms of leave.


Adoption leave

In the case of adoption, the parent employed by UNIL is entitled to an adoption leave of four months. In the event that both parents are employed by the Vaud cantonal administration (UNIL or outside UNIL), the adoption leave is granted to one person. At the couple’s request, it can be split between the parents.

The request must be submitted upon receipt of the adoption authorisation at the latest.

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Cantonal maternity allowance

There is a cantonal maternity allowance allocated, under certain conditions, to families who are not entitled to federal maternity benefits. This is the case, for example, with an adoption. You can obtain more information from the Caisse cantonale vaudoise de compensation.


Leave for sick chidren

As a father or mother with a UNIL contract, you are entitled to five working days a year to look after a sick child. The number of days is fixed and does not depend on the number of children in the family.

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Other leaves

As an employee of the Etat de Vaud (UNIL or non-UNIL), you can benefit from several types of short-term paid leave for family-related reasons.

  • Family Carer leave: up to 12 days per year, if you need to provide regular or permanent help or care to a relative whose health is seriously or permanently impaired and who is dependent on your assistance.
  • Important family circumstances: up to 2 days.
  • Marriage or registered partnership: 4 days.
  • Death of a close relative: up to 3 days.

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Vieux Pressoir  -  CH-1015 Lausanne
Tel. +41 21 692 20 59