Quick Trip to Paid Parental Leave

Paid parental leave is not something that is federally mandated in the United States. It’s up to individual employers and businesses. But, if paid leave is what you’re looking for before starting a family, here are some of the top countries that do pay parents for their leave:

  • Finland
    • Maternity leave starts seven weeks before the expected due date
    • Government covers the next sixteen weeks via a maternity grant
    • Paid paternity leave for eight weeks
    • Once a child turns three, parents can take partial care leave, splitting their time between work and home until the child enters second grade
  • Denmark
    • Receive a total of eighteen weeks off at full pay
    • Father can take off two consecutive weeks
    • After the initial eighteen weeks, have thirty-weeks to split how the parents see fit
  • Sweden
    • Parents have 480 days of paid leave at eighty percent of their normal pay
    • Eighteen weeks of paid leave reserved just for mothers
    • Paid paternity leave for ninety days
  • Belgium
    • Can take up to fifteen weeks for maternity leave
    • Paid paternity leave for ten days
    • Mothers can opt to take eight months of part-time leave instead of the full fifteen weeks
  • Iceland
    • Parents can split their nine months of leave down the middle
    • Each parent gets three months of leave, with the last three-month chunk being split however they wish
    • Each parent receives eighty percent of their pay while on leave

Other notable countries with paid parental leave include Serbia, Norway, Hungary, Estonia, and Lithuania. Some quick facts about them can be found here. The US has a long way to go to even begin catching up with these other countries.

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