Alerts and Updates

Men Are Now Eligible for Maternity Leave Benefits in Massachusetts

June 17, 2008

According to the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination

The Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination ("MCAD") recently announced that men are entitled to take leave pursuant to the Massachusetts Maternity Leave Act ("MMLA"), despite specific language in the MMLA's title and wording that such an entitlement is available for "female employees."

Until recently, only eligible female employees were entitled to eight weeks' leave for the purpose of giving birth or for adopting a child. The maternity leave could be with or without pay at the discretion of the employer. Recently, the MCAD expanded the eligibility for leave under the MMLA and made eligibility gender-neutral. According to the MCAD, both men and women are now entitled to take up to eight weeks of unpaid leave for the birth or adoption of a child.

Employers are cautioned to review their employee handbooks and leave policies and procedures to confirm that they are in compliance with the MCAD's new interpretation of the MMLA.

For Further Information

Should you have any questions about revising your leave policies or would like more information, please contact any attorney of the Employment & Immigration Practice Group or the attorney in the firm with whom you are regularly in contact.

Disclaimer: This Alert has been prepared and published for informational purposes only and is not offered, nor should be construed, as legal advice. For more information, please see the firm's full disclaimer.