Pre-placement Adoption Leave for B.C. Government Employees

Parents preparing to adopt a child can take this leave to attend mandatory pre-placement visits with the prospective adoptive child. Leave is also available for completing the legal process required by the child's country. This includes travel for international adoption.

Pre-placement visits are not normally required for direct placement adoptions. For example adoptions by

  • A family member
  • The partner of a birth parent
  • Foster parents if the child was living with them immediately before the adoption process

Pre-placement adoption leave can be taken intermittently as needed to a combined maximum of seven weeks (245 hours) per calendar year. Leave under this provision will end with the placement of the adoptive child. However, if a match is not successful, the employee is still eligible for the balance of the yearly maximum. 

Adoptive parents are eligible for parental leave following the placement.


Follow this timeline.

Before your leave

Submit the Maternity, Parental, Pre-placement Adoption Leave and/or Allowance Application (PDF, 350KB) to AskMyHR  .

Record leave days

Record your days off work in Time and Leave using the Pre Adoption Lv code. This will activate the pre-placement adoption leave allowance. 

After the adoption

Update your medical and dental benefits and your life insurance plans:

If you have flexible benefits, you have 60 days from the adoption of your child to make changes to your flexible benefits options.

Before the end of your leave

Inform your supervisor in writing of your intention to return to work as soon as possible. Use the Sample Letter to Supervisor Advising of Maternity or Parental Leave (DOCX, 743KB). Also inform your supervisor if you are

  • Submitting a request to take parental leave (and this leave was not already included in your pre-placement adoption leave letter)
  • Resigning and will not return to work

If you are taking parental leave and have already included this leave with your pre-placement adoption leave application, please refer to the parental leave timeline to find out what you need to do one month before the end of your parental leave.

Returning to Work

If you are a regular bargaining unit employee returning to work from a pre-placement adoption leave, you retain your seniority. You are also granted credit for seniority accumulated during your leave period. 

Choosing not to return to work

If you do not return to work for six months (or the equivalent amount of time you were on pre-placement adoption leave, whichever is longer),* the start date of your leave will be deemed your date of resignation. You will be responsible for repaying benefit premiums (both employee and employer portions) and any allowances you received on a pro-rata basis.

*Regular Crown Counsel are required to return to work for six months.

See important information about

Extending Your Parental Leave

There are two ways to extend your parental leave:

Extended child care leave

Regular employees can take this leave without pay at the conclusion of their pre-placement adoption leave. The total combined leave can be up to 18 months. Send a written request to your supervisor at least four weeks before the end of your leave.

Extended child care leave follows the same rules as a general leave without pay for pension contributions and maintaining benefits coverage.


Employees can also use vacation earned before their pre-placement adoption leave to extend their time off work.