1. Homepage
  2. Law Dictionary
  3. Maternity Leave in the USA

Maternity Leave in the USA

Maternity Leave

Maternity leave in the United States can be a daunting experience. Many new mothers are not sure what to expect when they go on maternity leave. This blog post will provide an overview of maternity leave in the United States, including eligibility requirements and benefits.

It is important to understand your rights and responsibilities before taking maternity leave. Hopefully, this post will provide some clarity for new mothers in the United States. Thanks for reading!

What Are the Benefits of Maternity Leave?

Maternity leave is a benefit or entitlement given to pregnant workers, or those who have just given birth, for set amount of time so they can care for the new addition. Maternity leave may also refer to parental leave granted to caregivers of children. Some countries and many U.S. states guarantee paid maternity leaves by law and others provide them through labor unions or company policies.

What Is a Maternity Leave?

maternity leave

A maternity leave protects mothers who have just given birth or are recovering from childbirth to participate in early bonding with their newborn. Benefits include paid time away from work to care for the newborn, decreased likelihood of depression, better physical and mental health of childcare professionals, increased breastfeeding rates–and more importantly–an opportunity to establish a family’s routine before returning to the difficult adjustments that come with employment.

The average leave is about 215 days, which is six months. But it can differ from country to country and company to company. In the US, the average maternal leave is 12 weeks or 156 days, but in California it’s 18 weeks! And in Kenya, they have 196 days before a new mom goes back to work.

While being pregnant may keep you from working long hours and carrying out strenuous duties, maternity leaves should give you plenty of time for your body and baby to get used to one another. It’s important that you start planning for this before conception since no matter what your job does offer during work, at home there will also be housekeeping tasks like grocery shopping, cleaning, cooking etc.

Are You Eligible for Maternity Leave?

In the United States, parents and families are protected by the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) after the adoption or birth of a kid. Employees who want to use the FMLA to go on unpaid leave without any further or paid time off are only eligible if they follow certain rules, and certain employee situations such as temp employees and transgenders are excluded. Employees must meet several requirements in order to be eligible for FMLA’s maternity leave protections such as:

  • You have to work for a covered employer.
  • During the 12 months preceding their leave, employees must have worked 1,250 hours (special service rules apply to airline flight crew members).
  • You work at a location where the employer has 50 or more employees within 75 miles; and
  • For the previous 12 months, they’ve worked for the employer.

In order to qualify for FMLA leave, the employee’s 12 months of employment need not be continuous. In general, only time served since the start of a period is considered unless it is due to an employee’s military service obligations or it is governed by a written collective bargaining agreement or other similar agreement.

Write a Comment

Write a Comment