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What new moms and dads need to know about paid leave

Posted at 12:57 PM, May 16, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-16 15:57:58-04

Last year, about 4 million babies were born in the U.S., with the bulk of those to working parents. Any recent mom or dad would tell you navigating the complex maze of employee benefits can be confusing. Between short-term disability insurance, Family Medical Leave, vacation, paid time off, and now, state and municipal-level paid leave laws, it’s anxiety-inducing.

The nation’s largest employee benefits company, Unum, recently conducted research among new parents to better understand some of their challenges. Some key findings include:
· Approximately 35% didn’t understand key benefits such as short-term disability insurance, paid parental leave, family medical leave or maternity support before becoming parents
· 43% didn’t meet with their HR department to review parental leave benefits, and of those who did, 48% of women and 34% of men spent less than 30 minutes doing so
· Paid leave is the most desired workplace benefit, but only 30% of these new parents’ employers offer it
· 36% of new parents didn’t feel prepared to return to work after their leave benefits ended

What does this mean for those who are planning to have a child or working moms and dads who want to better utilize their leave benefits? How should you start the conversation with your HR department?

MORE ABOUT ANNA STEFFENEY
Anna is President of LeaveLogic, a cloud-based platform that helps companies and their employees plan, track and manage various types of leave. Since founding LeaveLogic in 2015, Anna has guided the technology startup from concept, through multiple rounds of venture capital funding, to widespread rollout to employers across three countries.
A recognized thought leader in parental leave policy, Anna is regularly profiled in television and print media, participates in industry panels and speaking events, and has recently given a TEDx talk and participated in the White House Summit on Working Families.