Maternity Leave Application: Format and Examples

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Maternity Leave Application

The Maternity Benefit Act, of 1961, states that female employees in private and public enterprises and organisations in India are entitled to 12 weeks of maternity leave during the later stage of pregnancy and after childbirth. Furthermore, in 2016, the government of India amended the act and extended maternity leave to 26 weeks from 12 weeks. This is a paid leave considering the health and responsibilities of new mothers. This leave is not only restricted to biological mothers but also to commissioning mothers, adoptive mothers, surrogate mothers, and in cases of tubectomy. To claim this quintessential paid leave, women employees have to submit a maternity leave application to their employers. No employer can deny this leave as it is legally enforceable by the government. 

How to Apply for a Maternity Leave?

Maternity leave policy varies for government employees and private sector employees. Given below are the requirements for how a female employee can apply for maternity leave:

Government Employees

  • The leave is applicable for civil employees of the government sector.
  • Women get a paid maternity leave of up to 180 days.
  • This leave is only applicable for the first two live-born kids.

Private Sector Employees

  • The human resource (HR) department of each firm devises a maternity leave policy. Female employees must check with HR for detailed guidelines.
  • Women workforce in any firm is entitled to 26 weeks of maternity leave or 26 weeks of work from home

Also Read: Medical Leave Application

What to Include in a Maternity Leave Application?

It is appreciated that the maternity leave application is brief and to the point. The following particulars should be included in any of the applications for this paid leave:

  • Mention the date of taking a leave of absence.
  • Intimate about the day of resuming work.
  • Explain whether you are a commissioning mother or a pregnant mother.
  • Give detailed explanations about complications in pregnancy, if any.
  • Mention the name of the colleague who will be taking over your responsibilities in your absence.

Maternity Leave Application Format

Here is the format of the application for the reference of female employees in need of this paid leave. 

  • Salutation: Use formal endearment with the employer’s name.
  • Date: Mention the date of the application carefully.
  • Subject: Keep your subject short and crisp. 
  • Body: The body should contain the purpose of the application. Mention the duration of leave by stating the date of leaving and rejoining. State the date of childbirth, if you are a pregnant lady. Inform the employer about your substitute and your ongoing projects.
  • Documents: Attach medical reports.
  • Closing: Write a note of gratitude and appreciation for incorporating this much-needed break during one of the most important journeys of your life.
  • Signature: If you are sending the leave application via email then the signature is already attached to it. In case of a handwritten application mention your name and designation with your initials. 

Must Read: How to Write a Leave Application?

Tips to Write an Appropriate Maternity Leave Application

Given below are some essential tips to write an application for maternity leave.

  • Ensure that you send your application in due time so that your reporting manager can allocate your tasks accordingly and provide you with maternity benefits.
  • Be specific in your subject line. 
  • Make sure you use professional language and use appropriate salutations and closing.
  • Share all relevant information documents: medical records, reports about complications to increase leave period (to be decided by the employer), and contact details.
  • Suggest your backup.

Maternity Leave Application Samples

Here are some maternity leave application samples:

Sample 1 (For Pregnant Employees)

Subject: Application for Maternity Leave

Hello (Reporting Manager’s name),

I, (Name of the employee), have been working as (Job Title) in the (Team/Department) of the organisation.

I am pregnant for the last (No. of Months) and my delivery is due on (Delivery Date). I seek to apply for maternity leave from (Date of Leaving) to (Date of Resuming), as suggested by my gynaecologist. I will be unable to work during the leave of absence. I am submitting my medical records for your reference. I would like to pass over my responsibilities to (Mr./Ms. XYZ) during my leave period. 

Kindly approve my maternity leave for the aforementioned period and initiate my benefits as per the maternity leave policy of the firm.


(Employee’s Name)


Read: Formal Letter: Format, Types & Samples

Sample 2 (For Commissioning Mothers, Adoptive Mothers, and Surrogate Mothers)

Subject: Application for Maternity Leave.



I would like to inform you that I will be adopting (for adoptive mothers)/welcoming home my newborn baby (for commissioning and surrogate mothers) on (Date of the homecoming of adopted child or newborn). As I will be welcoming my child, I need to make the requisite preparations. To do the last-minute preparations and nurse the child, I will be unable to attend the office from (Date of Leaving) to (Date of Resuming). 

Please contact (Mr./Ms. XYZ) for any of my projects as he/she/they will be handling my workload during the leave of absence.

Please consider my request and grant me the benefits as per the company policy.

Thanks and Regards,

(Employee’s Name)


Maternity Leave Application

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Q1. When can a pregnant employee apply for maternity leave?

Ans. According to the Maternity Benefit Act of 1961, a pregnant employee can apply for maternity leave six weeks before the due delivery date. Commissioning and adoptive mothers should check with the human resources departments of their organisations to know the exact time of application.

Q2. How do I ask for maternity leave?

Ans. Read and understand the HR policy for maternity leave of the firm. Consult your gynaecologist and apply for the same by writing an email or physical letter to your reporting manager. Inform your manager about your substitute for maternity leave.

Q3. How do I write an application for leave?

Ans. Here is a sample for maternity leave application:
Hi (Reporting Manager),
I, (Name), want to apply for maternity leave from (Date of Leaving) to (Date of Resuming) as prescribed by my gynaecologist. I would like to pass over my workload to (Name of Colleague) during my leave period. Kindly approve my leave and initiate my benefits for my convenience.
Thanks and Regards.

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