Compensation for taking leave

Parents who adopt one or more children are entitled to adoption leave compensated by the health insurance company.

The adoption of a minor child now gives the right to adoption leave of a maximum of 6 weeks, regardless of the child's age. Leave is doubled if the child has a disability.

The duration of adoption leave will be gradually extended as follows:

  • one week from January 1st 2019
  • two weeks from January 1st 2021 at the latest
  • three weeks from January 1st 2023 at the latest
  • four weeks from January 1st2025 at the latest
  • five weeks from January 1st 2027 at the latest

If there are two adoptive parents, they divide these weeks between them. Only one of the two adopting parents will be able to obtain the additional week..


  • The leave must take effect within 2 months of the adopted child's registration in the population or foreigners’ registers.
  • The conditions of the compensation insurance must be met (internship, reference period, etc.)
  • Adoption leave can be granted to both parents.
  • In the context of an international adoption, adoption leave can already take effect for a period preceding the actual arrival in Belgium of the adopted child, namely from the day after approval by the competent central community authority of the decision to entrust the child to the adopting parent. You will be asked for certain official documents.


  • For salaried workers: The first 3 days of the period are covered by the employer. 
    For the remainder of the period, the adopting parent will receive compensation representing 82% of their gross wage evaluated in days.
    This amount is capped (for more information, consult the table of amounts).
  • For self-employed workers: This is a flat-rate payment per week of leave(for more information, consult the the table of amounts).