All About Paid Maternity Leave

Only 12% of employees in the United States have paid maternity leave. This means that most women have to choose between physically recovering from childbirth and bonding with their baby and making a living.

Unlike almost every other industrialized nation in the world, there is no federal requirement that employees receive any payment during the time they take off for the birth of their child. While there is a federal law offering paid maternity leave, the vast majority of women in the United States do not enjoy access to any paid job protection after the birth of a new baby.

About the Family Medical Leave Act

There is, however, a federal requirement under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), that many women without access to paid maternity leave use to at least take unpaid time off from work and in order to be able to return to their jobs after childbirth. FMLA protects a worker’s job for up to 12 weeks during any 12 month period if she meets certain eligibility criteria (e.g. she has worked for an employer for at least 1 year, clocking a minimum of 1,250 hours and her employer has at least 50 employees within 75 miles of her physical worksite).

Those who are fortunate to qualify for more than FMLA  do so because they benefit from their employer’s benefit policies. Private companies and employers will offer maternity leave policies, paternity leave policies and short-term disability policies for their employees in addition to traditional benefits like healthcare insurance and vacation benefits. In the past few years, in particular, there has been tremendous movement on the part of private employers to fill the gap and provide payment to employees during their parental leave. 

These companies are motivated by several things: attracting and retaining new moms and parents in their workforce, as well as trying to do the right thing, and finally reducing the cost of turnover from employees who may feel unable to continue to work at the same company after the large, life-changing event of starting a family and having a baby.

Companies and Maternity Leave Policies

Due to the fact that it’s often hard for employees to ask about their maternity leave policies for fear of being stigmatized or judged as less committed (which is particularly true for women who fear being “mommy tracked” at work), it’s often very hard for women to find out what their employers’ policies are. Therefore, we have crowdsourced a maternity leave database of over 1,500 employers in the U.S. and sorted their maternity and paternity leave policies by industry and length.

parents and baby

Certain patterns emerge among the companies that offer these very high levels of paid leave. First, they are largely for-profit institutions (the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, change.org and the United Nations being a few of the exceptions), and they are largely relatively large organizations with large, white-collar, professional workforces. They also tend to cluster around 3-4 different industries. Law firms, technology companies (particularly consumer technology companies), financial services firms as well as consulting firms tend to dominate this list of employers with generous parental leave policies.

One thing to note is that while these policies may exist for professional staff at these companies, certain employers choose to offer different benefits to contractual, part-time, hourly workers or other classifications of employees. At law firms, for example, attorneys may be eligible for paid maternity leave while administrative, operational and paralegal staff may have access to a lower level of benefit.

A few another thing to note is that many of these companies offer different levels of paternity leave to their employees, or make a designation regarding who is the “primary caretaker,” which means that one person of a presumed two-person household may be entitled to a longer leave if he/she is the primary caretaker for the child. It’s a gender-neutral term that some employers have chosen to set their parental policy around, rather than pick a policy for a mother or father of a child.


Finally, just as a few employers have chosen to give their employees “unlimited” paid time off (or PTO), a several (notably Netflix) also offer unlimited paid family leave. This leaves the decision as to time off for maternity or paternity leave with the individual employee and his / her manager. There is obviously no obligation to take any certain period of maternity leave so some employees may come back within a much shorter time than the full potential allotment they are entitled to (in this case 52 weeks in the year following the birth of their child).

The Top 180 Employers in 2017 for Paid Maternity Leave 

Each of the employers in the below list offer at least 16 weeks of paid maternity leave. If your company is missing from the list or we have incorrect information, please submit an anonymous tip on in our database

Companies That Offer Up To 52 Weeks Paid Maternity Leave

1. Netflix

2. Bill & Melinda Gate Foundation

Companies That Offer 39 Weeks Paid Maternity Leave

3. Army (British)

Companies That Offer 32 Weeks Paid Maternity Leave

4. Automattic, Inc.

Companies That Offer 26 Weeks Paid Maternity Leave

5. Adobe Systems

6. Organizer Inc.

7. AO.com

8. Etsy

9. Spotify

10. Worldpay

11. Zynga

Companies That Offer 24 Weeks Paid Maternity Leave

12. Open Society Foundations

13. eBay Inc.

14. Motorola

15. ZestFinance

16. 72andsunny

17. Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe

Companies That Offer 22 Weeks Paid Maternity Leave

18. FireEye

19. Avaya

20. Lenovo

Companies That Offer 21 Weeks Paid Maternity Leave

21. Mitie

22. Intel Corporation

Companies That Offer 20 Weeks Paid Maternity Leave

23. Yammer

24. Stonyfield Farms

25. Winston & Strawn

26. Microsoft

27. Atlasssian

28. Google

29. Twitter

30. Credit Suisse

31. Dropbox

32. Amazon

33. American Express Company

34. Standard Chartered

35. Mozilla

36. Tumblr

Companies That Offer 18 Weeks Paid Maternity Leave

37. Squarespace

38. Mailchimp

39. Bloomberg

40. WilmerHale

41. BakerHostetler

42. Wilson Sonsini

43. CA Technologies

44. Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP

45. Allen & Overy

46. Baker & McKensie

47. Arnold & Porter

48. Bracewell & Guiliani

49. Brown Rudnick

50. Cahill Gordon

51. Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft

52. Capital One Financial Corporation

53. Chadbourne & Park LLP

54. Cleary Gottlieb

55. Clifford Chance

56. Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP

57. Cooley LLP

58. Covington & Burling

59. Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner LLP

60. Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP

61. Foley & Lardner

62. Hogan Lovells

63. Jenner & Block

64. Goodwin & Proctor

65. Linklaters LLP

66. Kirkland & Ellis

67. Jones Day

68. Perkins Coie

69. Paul Weiss

70. Mayer Brown

71. Sidley Austin

72. Squire Patton

73. Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman

74. Sullivan & Cromwell LLP

75. Paul Hastings

76. Yum! Brands, Inc.

77. Gunderson Dettmer

78. Williams & Connelly LLP

79. GoDaddy

80. YouTube

81. McDermott Will & Emery

82. change.org

83. Blizzard Entertainment

84. Pepper Hamilton

85. Dechert LLP

86. Doctors Without Borders

Companies That Offer 17 Weeks Paid Maternity Leave

87. Optimizely

88. DLA Piper

89. Instagram

90. Johnson & Johnson

91. Schlumberger

92. Uber

93. Opower

94. Reddit

95. Mixpanel

Companies That Offer 16 Weeks Paid Maternity Leave

96. Paypal

97. Korn Ferry

98. Tesla Motors

99. Soundcloud

100. Facebook

101. Palantir

102. L’Oreal Group

103. Square

104. Zillow

105. Hill + Knowlton Strategies

106. Quinn Emmanuel

107. Accenture

108. AllianceBernstein LP

109. Avon

110. Bain & Company

111. Bank of America

112. Barclays Bank

113.Morgan Lewis

114. Boston Consulting Group

115. Deustche Bank

116. Dun & Bradstreet

117. EY

118. Exelon

119. Factset Research

120. Fish & Richardson

121. Genentech

122. General Electric

123. Holland & Knight

124. IKEA

125. JP Morgan Chase

126. KPMG

127. LinkedIn

128. Morgan Stanley

129. The New York Times

130. Pinterest

131. Oracle

132. Procter & Gamble

133. Reed Smith LLP

134. SAP

135. Sedgwick LLP

136. SunTrust Banks

137. Suntrust Robinson Humphrey

138.Goldman Sachs

139. UBS

140. United Nations

141. Watchell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz

142. Wells Fargo

143. Yahoo!

144. PIMCO

145. Blackstone Group

146. Vodafone Group

147. Sun Edison

148. Airbnb

149. Github

150. Reckitt Benckiser

151. Kickstarter

152. The Nation

153. Media Math

154. Marketo

155. The Honest Company

156. Proofpoint

157. Patagonia

158. Booking.com

159. Blank Rome

160. Applied Materials

161. Gamechanger

162. Zendesk

163. Chegg

164. Blue State Digital

165. Simple

166. Ustwo

167. Velir

168. Natural Resources Defense Council

169. Meetup Inc.

170. JustGiving

171. Anheuser-Busch

172. AXA

173. California Certified Organic Farmers

174. Intact Financial

175. 15Five

176. VSCO

177. OCH-Ziff Capital Management Group LLC

178. Fidelity Investments

179. Spring

180. Lowenstein Sandler LLP

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