(Closed) Law Firm or Other Maternity Leave Policy

posted 3 years ago in Career
Post # 33
Member
1192 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: December 2012

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graces7 :  It’s all a balancing act though.  While I don’t think I’d get much for maternity leave, I think they’d let me take off as much time as I want/need, they let me leave when my kid is sick, i’m not hounded to make a minimum number of billable hours.  Honestly, as my boss tells me often, they don’t care what I do as long as my work gets done.  When it is slow, I go home. When it is busy, I work more.  Balance is key.

Post # 34
Member
1703 posts
Bumble bee

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graces7 :  

As long as you aren’t dependent on someone else to finance it.

Post # 36
Member
1192 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: December 2012

I’d like to add that maternity (and paternity) leave is just like any other benefit.  It attracts and retains employees to help improve the company.  Employers don’t have to offer benefits, but if they don’t, then people won’t want to work there or stay there long term.  

Post # 37
Member
313 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2016

I work at a Cdn firm, and we are very lucky to get 5.5 months fully paid leave (as long as you return to work for a minimum of 6 months after your leave), and then we can take the rest of the year and just collect EI (if we meet the federal requirements to get EI). 

I would mention that asides from official policies, partnership and childbearing is a sore spot for many firms, and mine is no different. It seems that having children at the “wrong time” (aka, in your mid-senior associate years) can reduce your chances of making partner and that taking a full year leave can essentially eliminate it. I wish this was not the case, but where I work, it is. Women are encouraged to only take the 5.5 months full pay, almost as a “reward” to to return early. Of course, if you want to take a year, you can and they have to allow you, but it does affect partnership. Nobody would admit this, of course, but statistics don’t lie. 

As a result, and because I am a chicken, I would probably not mention mat leave and partnership in the same sentence. But, it is a real issue and I wish more firms would be more up front in addressing it. 

Post # 40
Member
9396 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

We aren’t TTC just yet, but I’m in big law and my firm offers 18 weeks paid leave on top of short-term disability time — so it ends up being around 6 months total. I haven’t heard of anyone getting pushback about taking it, the partners are always beyond understanding.

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