Roughly a third of U.S. employers (38 per cent) offer paid parental leave to new parents, according to a report from WorldatWork and Mercer.

There’s no federal mandate to offer paid leave, although some states and municipalities, such as California, San Francisco, New York, New Jersey and Hawaii, require organizations to do so.

“Increased public attention, employee requests and competition for talent are causing more organizations to add or enhance both their paid leave and parental leave benefits programs,” Leonard Sanicola, WorldatWork senior practice leader, said in a release. “Specifically, more organizations are considering adding paid parental leave benefits to their total rewards portfolio as these benefits provide a competitive advantage in today’s world, especially as more millennials are starting families.”

Read: Indiana University introduces paid parental leave

Among the organizations that offer a paid program, the average leave is 4.1 weeks with full pay and the median is three weeks. The organization with the most generous leave offered 16 weeks. The organization with the least generous leave offers 0.6 weeks.

In 14 per cent of organizations, employees with special circumstances, such as those who experienced multiple births or mothers who undergo Caesarean sections, qualify for extra leave.

Read: Yum! Brands boosts parental leave for U.S. corporate staff

The report also found 98 per cent of birth mothers are eligible for paid leave. That compares to 94 per cent of birth fathers, 90 per cent of adoptive parents, 76 per cent of domestic partners and 56 per cent of foster parents. Half of the respondents (47 per cent) allow employees to take paid parental leave as of their hiring date, and a third (37 per cent) require employees to have worked with the organization for 12 months before they’re eligible.

Only 12 per cent of employers subject to local or state paid parental leave laws offer the minimum provisions for leave. Most offer more time off (70 per cent), and significant minority provide a larger percentage of employees’ normal pay rate (47 per cent) and leave for a broader set of employees (37 per cent).

Read: Danone to launch global parental policy

Copyright © 2018 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on

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