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Pregnancy & Parental Leave Policy

Introduction: How to Use This Tool

Unpaid pregnancy (aka, maternity) and parental leave guarantee employees the right to be away from work for the occasion without forfeiting their job. In addition, many employers offer pregnancy, maternity and parental benefits that are more generous than required by employment standards laws. Either way, you must have a written HR policy establishing the ground rules for such leave—who’s eligible, how long it can last, required notification, etc.  This policy, which was originally drafted for the Law Society of BC is a model that you can adapt for your own organization.

Important Notice: This policy is actually two policies in one: The unpaid leave provisions are based on minimum requirements of federal Employment Insurance and provincial employment standards laws. By contrast, the paid leave provisions are optional. Unlike unpaid leave, employers aren’t legally required to provide paid leave for pregnancy and parental obligations. Of course, many organizations do so anyway. The paid leave provisions in this Model are extremely generous and reflect the largest of the Law Society of BC—including top-offs based on BC laws.