(Closed) Was anyone allowed to use sick or vacation time as part of maternity leave?

posted 4 years ago in Pregnancy
Post # 16
2886 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

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Prettysmile40 :  I’m not pregnant but a couple of my friends work in HR and the policy varies from company to company.

At my previous company, you were allowed to tack on your vacation time/sick bank time (all one bank) onto maternity leave.  So you were able to take up to 12 weeks FMLA (at I believe 60% pay under STD) then add on your saved vacation time.  It was an engineering company so I worked with mostly men, but one of the women wound up taking off a total of 16 weeks (she had 4 weeks vacation saved up).

This same company was bought out by another company last year.  The rules have changed and now they only allow you to take 2 weeks straight off at a time – for whatever reason.  So say you want to backpack around Europe and take 3 weeks off….nope, you can only take 2 weeks off.  So the most you can take off for maternity leave is 14 weeks (12 +2).  A lot of employees are pretty upset about it.

And yes, Curlycupcake is right, legally you don’t get anything unless your company has > 50 employees.  Even for those that legally have to give you some sort of maternity leave, they don’t even have to necessarily guarantee your position, just one comparable.

Post # 17
547 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

No maternity leave here either. I think we have to do a combination of STD and sick leave (which they’re very generous with, so that’s something at least).

Post # 18
13903 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Most people use their sick or vacation time to supplement their employer’s maternity leave coverage.  FMLA gives you 12 weeks of job protection (unpaid, of course) and you can use your leave during that time to have some income.

Make sure you save some time off for all those baby doctors appointments, though!

Post # 19
9802 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

You’re probably luckier than most people in the US.  Most people use or use up their vacation/sick leave.  Maybe in combo with short term disability.

Post # 20
5842 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2011

My job has paid maternity leave and people tack on 1-2 weeks of vacation sometimes. It’s up to their boss. Depending on when you give birth you’ll probably want to have some extra time for doctors appointments/illness though.

Post # 21
7602 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2013

We don’t really have sick leave, they allow a couple of days off but if it’s over a certain (ambiguous) amount, your bonus is docked. Also, we HAVE to use vacation before we are allowed to fall back on the partially paid maternity leave. Therefore, females come back from maternity leave with absolutely no vacation time. 

ETA: Even though you have to use vacation time before you 12 weeks of maternity leave kicks off you can still only take off 12 total paid weeks. So even if you have 2.5 weeks of vacation, you don’t get 12 weeks of the maternity leave on top of that, you get 10.5. Therefore, everyone I know has used up all of their vacation before they gave birth.

Post # 22
1083 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

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piperpoppy :  Same with mine. FMLA applies but I can either use my paid short term leave or totally unpaid. 

Post # 23
304 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

Wow, just wow. I dont know how the US system works but Thats just crazy. Here in the UK we get a year though I believe 9 months is paid for at certain percentages. My employer gives 6 months of fully paid benefits everythign etc and then subsequent months at 90% or something thereabout, i havent looked into it fully as I plan on coming back to work at the end of 6 months anyway. One area where living in the UK has its advantages.

Post # 24
1183 posts
Bumble bee

I can’t believe mums to be in America get so little! We get 12 months in the UK with 9 months laid and the last 3 months unpaid. How much pay you get depends on if you only qualify for statutory leave  (minimum legal amount) or if your employer has an enhanced package. 

Post # 25
202 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

Like others have said it really depends on your company. I’m in Canada but I work for an American company. I can tack on vacation before or after my leave. I’m taking two weeks before my due date and none after for now. So I’ll have a 54 weeks. I need to give 4 weeks’ notice of my return date so I can add vacation at the end if I really wanted too but I probably won’t. I’ll be coming back with 6 weeks vacation, two weeks before Christmas so I’ll just wait till Christmas and enjoy time with my family.

Post # 26
9821 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

This is going to be completely dependent on your company.

My employer only allows for a total of 12 weeks, and you can take it paid (using PTO) or unpaid.

Some places will require that you use up any sick/vacation time before they allow you to take time off unpaid.

Post # 27
1915 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2013 - backyard in the woods

It’s all rolled into my maternity leave- paid short term sick, paid long term sick, then whatever’s left of 12 weeks unpaid as FMLA.

Post # 28
1189 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: February 2016

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mimivac :  You work for the Federal Gov’t and still don’t get paid mat leave?! 

This blows my mind. In Canada, if you’re a Federal gov’t employee, you get a full year of mat leave (or paternity leave, if your spouse is unemployed or chooses to continue working) paid at 95% of your salary.

It honestly saddens/disgusts me how new parents are treated in the US 🙁

Post # 29
667 posts
Busy bee

God, the leave in America is terrible, I feel so bad for you.  In Ireland everyone is entitled to 6 months off, the government pays maternity leave (its not your full salary its just a certain amount).  My company pay Maternity Leave but not all do.  After 6 months you’re allowed to take unpaid leave for a certain amount of time, then tacked on the end is your annual leave for the time you were off and any public holidays you missed so that can be a further 6 weeks, so even with no unpaid leave you’re not going back to work until the baby is 7-8months!

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