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Norway Leave Laws & Holidays

Paid Time Off, Vacation, Sick Leave, Maternity Leave, Paternity Leave, Bereavement Leave, Jury Duty Leave, Military Leave, and Voting Leave

Table Of Contents

Last updated on December 26, 2023.

Paid Time Off (PTO) in Norway

Vacation Leave Quota

25 days

The law guarantees full-time employees at least 25 days of paid vacation each year of work. Thus, the regular accrual rate is 2.08 days each month. The only national policy that has more vacation days in Europe is the United Kingdom. Employees older than 60 are entitled to 31 days of paid vacation. What Norway makes different from all other leave laws in Europe is that part-time employees cannot be eligible for paid vacation. They will take some days off, but these days will not be paid.

All employees are allowed to take 3 weeks of continued vacation from June 1 to September 30. The exact dates when an employee will take his/her vacation are a matter of agreement between the employee and the employer. If there is no such agreement, it is the employer who makes the decision. Nevertheless, most employees will know their vacation plans at least 2 months before taking it.


Vacation is paid at the rate of 10.20% of their regular annual salaries earned in the previous year. It is typically paid at the beginning of June.

This rate of vacation pay is higher:

  • 12% for employees covered by the CBA (collective bargaining agreement)

  • 12.5% for employees 60+ years

Sick Leave in Norway

Paid sick leave up to 52 weeks.

Sick leave in Norway doesn’t have a defined limit on the number of days. However, sick pay may last only up to 52 weeks. A doctor’s note is necessary if an employee is sick for more than 3 days.


Sick leave is compensated, varying in rates and who pays based on its duration.

Regular employees are entitled to 16 days of paid sick leave at the rate of 100%, paid by the employer.

Starting on the 17th day, an employee continues to receive sick pay, but from the government. This pay has a cap, which is six times the base amount of national insurance.

Parental Leave Program

Parental Leave System in Norway

Up to 59 weeks.

The parental leave system in Norway is somewhat more complicated then in other countries. The parental benefit period in Norway allows for 49 weeks with 100% salary coverage or 59 weeks with 80% salary coverage, including the maternal and paternal quotas. The parental leave program grants employed mothers and fathers the right to receive parental benefits as a substitute for their regular paid employment.

Parents can divide the shared parental leave between themselves as they wish, after finishing the maternal and paternal quotas.

The “maternal quota” in Norway is a part of the parental leave that is specifically reserved for the mother and cannot be transferred to the father. In Norway’s parental leave system, certain parts of the leave are set aside exclusively for each parent to encourage both mothers and fathers to take an active role in early childcare.

The “paternal quota” is a portion of the leave exclusively reserved for the father or the co-mother (in the case of same-sex couples). This approach encourages shared parenting and supports gender equality.

Maternity Leave in Norway

A minimum of 15 weeks.

The maternal quota may be 15 weeks at 100% pay or 19 weeks at 80% pay. A pregnant employee is required to use 3 weeks of parental leave before the anticipated date of birth, and 6 weeks after the birth.

The basic maternal quota may be:

  • 15 weeks at a rate of 100% of salary or
  • 19 weeks at a rate of 80% salary

A mother may take 59 weeks of paid parental leave through the Norwegian welfare system. Furthermore, the employee has the option to prolong maternity leave for an additional year, which is then unpaid.

This long leave is one of the best maternity leave in the world.

To be eligible for maternity leave, an employee must have at least 6 months of service in the last 10 months.

Paternity Leave in Norway

15 weeks or 19 weeks

The duration of leave reserved for a father or a partner of the mother, the so-called paternal quota, is also 15 weeks.

However, the paternal quota may be either:

  • 15 weeks, at a rate of 100% pay


  • 19 weeks at a rate of 80% pay.

The weeks defined as “paternal quota” are specifically for the father or co-mother and can’t be transferred to the mother.

Partners also have the right to a two-week leave around the time of childbirth, in addition to their allocated paternal quota. While there is no legal requirement for this leave to be paid, many companies choose to provide paid leave during this time.

Like a mother, a partner can also prolong paternity leave for an additional year, which is unpaid.

The father’s or co-mother’s taking of parental benefits may start at the earliest in the 7th week after birth.

Parental Leave in Norway

49 weeks or 59 weeks

Parents may take shared parental leave and benefits once they have taken the 15 or 19 weeks of the maternal and paternal quotas. This leave is flexible, allowing for use by either the mother or the partner alone or by both parents together.


The choice the parents make regarding their parental leave options determines the total amount of leave that is available.

It may be:

  • 49 weeks, at a rate of 100% earning

  • 59 weeks, at a rate of 80% earning

The Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration is a public welfare organization that pays for parental leave.

Bereavement Leave in Norway

Not required by law.

Bereavement leave is not a legally mandated leave but rather a discretionary benefit provided by employers. Agreements, such as collective agreements, or internal policies of a company typically govern the eligibility for such leave and its pay.

Jury Duty Leave in Norway

Jury duty leave is not specified by law.

Military Leave in Norway

Unpaid leave is required by law.

Employees may take a leave for military service and can extend this leave for up to two years to participate in peacekeeping missions. Though there is no legal obligation for employers to pay employees during this time, employees are entitled to accumulate vacation pay for a maximum of 3 months annually during their mandatory military service.

Voting Leave in Norway

Voting leave is not specified by law.

Public Holidays in Norway for 2024

12 days of public holidays

There is 10 public holidays in Norway, which make 12 non-working days. There are two holidays that last more than one day:

  • Easter - 2 days
  • Christmas - 2 days
A complete list of official holidays celebrated in Noway in 2024:
Date Holiday
January 1 New Year
March 28 Maundy Thursday
March 29 Good Friday
March 31 & April 1 Easter
May 1 Worker’s Day
May 9 Ascension Day
May 17 Constitution Day
May 19 Whit Sunday (Pentocost)
May 20 Whit Monday
December 25 & 26 Christmas

Official national holidays that occur during the weekend are lost.


  1. Local Laws & Regulations, https://www.atlashxm.com/en/countries/norway

  2. Payroll and Benefits Guide Norway, https://www.papayaglobal.com/countrypedia/country/norway/

  3. Definitive Guide to Hiring in Norway, https://www.globalexpansion.com/countrypedia/norway

  4. Parental leave in Norway? What you should know, https://www.tekna.no/en/salary-and-negotiations/employment-law/parental-leave-in-norway–what-you-should-know/

  5. Parental Leave and father’s quota, https://www.samfunnsforskning.no/core/english/publications/Infographics/parental-leave-and-father-s-quota/corestatus-parental-leave-fathers-quota.pdf

All materials have been prepared for general information purposes only to permit you to learn more about this region's leave laws. The information presented is not legal advice, is not to be acted on as such, and may not be current. Please contact your local legal counsel to learn more about the leave laws in your country.

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