Maternity Leave Advice
I work for a small company (that has been growing and is now expanding). I’ve been there 4 years- will be 5 in October. I found out I was pregnant with my son in August 2016. Two more of my coworkers also announced they were pregnant a few months later. The company I work for has been so small, that they didn’t have a maternity leave policy in place so they kind of winged it. I received the first 6 weeks of maternity leave covered by Short Term Disability. The second six weeks were covered by the company, which they graciously offered to pay for (60% of my salary.) My son was born at the end of March 2017. When I returned, they worked with me in transitioning back. They understood how important my family and spending time with my son was and they offered me a part time position 3 days a week. I took a step back career wise, but I knew I wanted to spend time with my son.
Fast forward to January 1, 2018. I added another day on of work so now I am working 4 days a week. (This was done in preparation for planning for our second. Working 4 days a week would qualify me for six weeks maternity leave under short term disability.) I found out I was pregnant with our second on January 15 and only shared the news with my husband.
A few weeks later, my company sent out an official maternity leave policy. The first 6 weeks covered by short term disability and the second 6 weeks covered by the company. However, in order to qualify for the second six weeks paid, you need to have worked 40 hours a week for at least one calendar year. Which means I do not qualify and wouldn’t even have a chance to due to the timing. (I’m not sure why it took them almost a year to implement an actual, written company policy.)
I know not many women are lucky enough to get any paid leave and I by no means want to sound ungrateful as my company has been generous and flexible with me already. Should I request the second six weeks of leave be paid and grandfathered in to the previous “policy” since I was already pregnant before they instituted it? Or am I out of luck- be thankful for what they offered in the past and take the first 6 weeks paid and second 6 weeks unpaid and forget it?
What would you do or suggest? Again, I’m so appreciative for what my company has done for me already and I am grateful. Please no comments about how I am selfish or not grateful in potentially considering to ask for the second six weeks to be paid. Thanks ladies.