This Country’s Maternity Leave Policy Will Make You Want to Move There

This Country’s Maternity Leave Policy Will Make You Want to Move There

If you have a friend from Bulgaria, don’t ask about her maternity leave because you might wither from jealousy.

The Balkan country gives 58.6 weeks (that’s over a year!) of leave, plus a pay rate equaling nearly 46 weeks.

That’s the best in the world, according to the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). Their ranking of the maternity leave policies in 42 countries took into account both the amount of time off, as well as the percentage of their pay new moms will receive.

Here’s a look at the top 10 countries — all of which are in Europe — and how much time they offer:

Countries With Most Generous Maternity Leave

1. Bulgaria: 58.6 weeks
2. Greece: 17 weeks basic maternity leave (although depending on insurance, some may receive 26 weeks)
3. United Kingdom: 52 weeks
4. Slovakia: 34 weeks
5. Croatia: 30 weeks
6. Czech Republic: 28 weeks (37 for multiple births or for a single mother)
7. Ireland: 42 weeks
8. Hungary: 24 weeks
9. Italy: 21.7 weeks
10. (tie) Estonia: 20 weeks
10. (tie) Poland: 20 weeks

Of course, this list highlights (once again) that the U.S. is seriously lacking when it comes to maternity leave — as it’s the only developed country that doesn’t require some form of paid leave for new moms. Some have even resorted to crowdfunding their maternity leave so they can recover and bond with baby without wrecking their finances.

After all, babies are pretty darn expensive, and we can’t all move to Bulgaria. If kids are in your future plan and your company offers paid maternity leave, here’s how to prep for the time off — and make a successful return.

RELATED: My Husband Lost His Job — And Then I Got Pregnant. Here's How We Got By


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