Last week, it was announced that the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills will launch a consultation process to explore proposals to implement a new flexible working system by 2015.
The government says the proposals, should they be implemented, will help parents balance their work and family commitments by giving fathers more opportunity to take time off to care for their children.
The consultation process will also involve considering the best approach to extend the right to request flexible working to all employees.
The government has suggested that the proposed new system would transform the opportunities for fathers to take time off to care for their children, while maintaining a mother's guaranteed right to paid time off after birth.
The new system may also allow parents to share leave by splitting it between them.