This article explores how working fathers are conceptualised within the UK’s work-family law and policy framework and whether a dominant ideology of fatherhood can be discerned. The socio-legal literature on men and masculinities is considered alongside established feminist theory on families, paid work and unpaid care to provide a backdrop to the analysis of current policy provision in this area. Three ‘ideal’ type ideologies of fatherhood are identified (‘absent’, ‘involved’ and ‘active’) which are used to critically examine the current legal framework. [---]