Boston-based law firm Foley Hoag has expanded its parental leave policy, following the lead of a number of other employers who are enhancing the benefit in an effort to attract and retain top talent.
This comes on the heels of other companies including Estée Lauder, Bristol-Myers Squibb and PwC having recently enhanced their family-friendly benefits and PTO policies. In addition, federal and state lawmakers have been active at putting in place policies that boost and protect new parents.
The firm’s new policy provides paid parental leave for up to 18 weeks to all parents, regardless of whether one is the primary caregiver or not. Previously, parents designated as a non-primary caregiver were offered just four weeks of paid leave.
This expanded policy also allows new parents to take the leave at any point during the 12 months following the birth or adoption of their child. All legal personnel who take paid parental leave will receive 100% of their base compensation.
See more: 10 creative ways to help working parents
Foley Hoag says the enhanced policy is an important step in helping new parents spend time with their child while helping them achieve a better work-life balance.
Adrienne Ellman, partner and co-chair of Foley Hoag’s Private Equity Transactions Group Ellman, says the firm anticipates that the new benefit “will have a significant positive impact on our attorneys and legal personnel.”
Also see: Top 20 workplaces for parents
Employers are increasingly zeroing in on paid parental leave. Companies across the country offering paid parental leave increased significantly between 2016 and 2018 for every type of parental leave, according to the Society for Human Resource Management’s annual benefits survey, released last month. The percentage of employers offering paid maternity leave increased from 26% in 2016 to 35% in 2018 and paid paternity leave increased from 21% to 29% over the same period. Meanwhile, adoption (20% to 28%), foster child (13% to 21%) and surrogacy (6% to 12%) leave also increased in the last two years.
“New parents shouldn’t have to make the choice between family and career,” says Kenneth Leonetti, co-managing partner at Foley Hoag. “We are committed to supporting our colleagues throughout the various stages of their lives and this new policy provides a great deal of flexibility to all caregivers.”
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