Will you get paid maternity leave?

posted 5 months ago in Pregnancy
Post # 15
2438 posts
Buzzing bee

My employer allows time off but you must use PTO. I took 12 weeks and used sick time for all of it. So I was technically paid but had to tap into my accrued days. Luckily I had 1,000 hours of sick time build up so the 12 weeks barely made a dent. 

Post # 16
472 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2017

mel2 :  as a teacher in CT I get 12 weeks FMLA but I need to use any sick days built up to be paid for it. Thankfully, I’ve been working in my district long enough to be able to be paid for the entire time, but not all teachers are able to do that. I’ll start saving up sick days in preparation for whenever we get pregnant again with our second when I go back. (Read: I never take time off of work/sick days if I can avoid it) 

My husband is also a teacher, but they wouldn’t let him use his sick time for paid paternity leave, so he only took 3 days off after baby was born to be with us. That meant I was on my own the day after we got home from the hospital, which stunk! 

Post # 17
1961 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2017 - Pearson Convention Centre

I live in Canada and I’m entitled to 6 months and my husband is entitled to another 6 months, or we have the option of 1 person taking the year off.

Post # 18
1218 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

I get pretty generous benefits (for the US)- I work at one of the big accounting firms and they’re always competing on benefits. First I get short term disability at 100% pay that kicks in 2 weeks prior to my due date and runs for 8 weeks following (10 weeks for a c-section delivery). Then after that I get 8 more weeks of parental leave, which is available to both women and men after the birth of a child. I can also tack on some vacation after that- in total we get 26 weeks of job protected leave, so if you don’t have any vacation to add onto the end theoretically you could still take 10 weeks after paid leave as unpaid and still return to your job. 

They also just started a new phased return to work program for both moms and dads where you can work 60% of your normal hours at full-time pay for the first month back at work. 

Post # 19
162 posts
Blushing bee

I am in the UK and I am entitled to a year’s maternity leave, with my job protected, at about 50% of my salary.  I accrue paid holiday time whilst on maternity leave that I can tack on the end, so I will probably be off for 13 months in total with the final month at 100% of salary again.

My husband gets 2 weeks’ paid paternity leave and will then add 2 weeks’ paid holiday to that, so will be home for 4 weeks in total.

I think the (lack of) maternity benefits in the US is really appalling.  I have so much respect for you US mummas that have to work with really tiny babies.

Post # 20
619 posts
Busy bee

mel2 :  i’m on maternity leave currently. Get paid for 16 weeks. 

Post # 21
7286 posts
Busy Beekeeper

mel2 :  I got 8 weeks fully paid plus a STD policy that capped out at $4500 for 6 weeks (I took it as a lump sum at the end because I forgot to do the paperwork sooner). Additionally I used 8 days of PTO. The rest was unpaid because I took 5 months which was the longest my company had ever agreed to. 

Post # 22
1708 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

I’m in the Netherlands so we get 16 weeks at 100%. I’ll take 4 before and 12 after. But I don’t plan to go back until January. Once I do, I will do flex hours, work from home, and probably part time. I start my new job May 20 and will go on maternity leave on July 26. 

At my old job in Canada, my firm topped up to 100% for 17 weeks and then you could take parental leave, which totaled 12-18 months depending on which option you choose. 

The US really needs to value maternity/parental leave and make it mandatory. 

Post # 23
4270 posts
Honey bee

No paid leave unless you have accrued sick leave and/or you opted to enroll in short-term disability (which is only up to 2/3rds of your salary) when you started that you pay for.  And the short-term is a joke because it is nearly impossible to sign up for if you didn’t do it when you started, it doesn’t automatically increase when your salary increases, and is nearly impossible to raise your coverage as your salary increases.   So mine is based on the salary I was making at time of signing up which is over $20/hr less than I make now so 2/3rds of that is actually less than the current minimum wage here.  And I have to exhaust my sick leave balance before short-term kicks in.

Up to 12 weeks can be covered by fmla, otherwise it has to be a medical leave in order to guarantee you’ll still have a job (again…all of it unpaid).

Post # 24
140 posts
Blushing bee

mel2 :  I’m in the US. My company offers 4 months paid maternity leave and 2 months paid paternity leave. We also have unlimited vacation, so you don’t have to worry about any sicks days or time off for appointments and such.

Post # 25
673 posts
Busy bee

In Canada, you get 4 months for maternity and about 7-8 months of paternity. You can spread it out to 18 months total at a lower rate but job protection isn’t always guaranteed (depends on province and employer as pay is determined federally but job protection is provincial). In my province, you need to work at least 3 months (used to be a year) before you get job protection. My work provides some top up, not full, for the first 4 months and full benefits. I took 7 months and Darling Husband took 5. Everyone who works as well as the employer pays a percentage based on their pay to go into an employment insurance fund. This is what covers unemployment, maternity and compassionate care benefits. I did the math and the percentage you and a spouse pay over your working career equates to one year of benefits. There are some cons, one of the biggest that once you hit around 4 months, if you don’t like your job, you feel and kind of are stuck. I’ve read and heard stories of women in the US changing jobs up to a month before they’re due – which when I was miserable at 5 months pregnant at my job would have been a dream. Don’t get me wrong though, I’m so thankful to have job protection and coverage – I just wish there was an ultimate solution to parental leave that gives us the best of both worlds. 

Post # 26
1261 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2018 - Location

I live in Canada. Our national employment insurance system pays:

55% of your salary for 12 months, or

33% of your salary for 18 months

I am hoping to go with the latter (starting TTC in May). Some employers also offer “top-up” pay, unfortunately I only get 6 weeks of that. So the majority will be living on 33% which kinda sucks but I really want to stay home with my kids when they’re little. My plan is to go back for a year after #1 and then do the same with #2. 

Post # 27
1756 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2018

I live in New Zealand and we six months of $500 a week paid by the government and we get up to a year off work. The employer has to leave the job open. Even then I don’t think it’s enough. 

Post # 28
3326 posts
Sugar bee

TheGridMonster :  Dang, girl, what firm are you at? J/k. 

I was self employed when I had my first so I had zero paid leave but as much job protection as I wanted.  I’m trying for #2 and am still self employed again so if I get pregnant again, I will start working again as soon as I can find childcare after 6-8 weeks. That 3 month sleep regression was a sonfabitch when it came to trying to work during naptime! It would have been easier to bill during the first six weeks than in months 3 and 4.

Post # 29
620 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2019 - Turkey

I’ve just checked in Turkey, where I live, women get fully paid 8 weeks before the birth and 8 weeks after the birth as a baseline. One can have a longer unpaid leave like one year or more I suppose in some jobs too.

I know in Germany women may decide not to turn back to work until their child (!) is 18 years old (unpaid after some while of course) and their job is still secured. 

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