You need to be logged in to save pages.
Our community membership is open to all single parents in England and Wales and gives you access to local and online support, news and events.Register now
For single parents, it’s usually important that work fits around childcare commitments. Making changes to the way you work – having flexible start or finish times or working from home, for example – might fit better with the needs of your family.
Working flexibly can mean:
This page explains some of the key things to know about your right to flexible working.
So make sure you apply in plenty of time. Although you have the right to ask, your employer can say no if they have a valid business reason. This could be because of things like cost, or it being too hard to cover you, or the change making your role less effective.
If they do say no, they should also tell you the process for asking them to reconsider. If they don’t change their decision and you think they’re being unfair, you can make a formal complaint. Citizens Advice has more on your options if you’re turned down.
The government has announced big changes to flexible working requests. They haven’t yet said when this will happen, but at some point you’ll be able to ask for flexible working on day 1 of a job. You’ll be able to ask 2 times a year instead of once, and won’t have to explain the impact of the change on your employer. This is much better for employees – and will no doubt lead to even more people working flexibly.
The Working Families charity has lots of useful advice about flexible working, including:
Date last updated: 18 May 2023