Unpaid maternity leave would empty cash savings for 3-in-4

Pregnant Woman Working On Computer At Table

1,001 employed women between the ages of 18 and 44 were surveyed to measure how their finances would hold up after 8 weeks of unpaid maternity leave. We also asked this group how they would rank paid maternity leave against other employee benefits.

You can view the full report here: https://www.meetbreeze.com/disability-insurance/unpaid-maternity-leave-financial-impact-study/

Some key findings included:

  • 74% wouldn’t have any cash savings left after 8 weeks of unpaid maternity leave
  • 49% would consider drawing from their retirement account to cover costs during unpaid maternity leave
  • On a scale from 1 (no setback) to 10 (permanent setback), the highest percentage of women answered with 10 when rating the potential financial setback from 8 weeks of unpaid maternity leave
  • 47% would take 5% less salary if an employer was offering 8 weeks of paid maternity leave
  • 30% would give up vision insurance if an employer was offering 8 weeks of paid maternity leave, while 22% would give up dental, and 15% would give up health insurance

The kicker? Short-term disability insurance can be an effective way for women to protect their finances against unpaid maternity leave. Pregnancy is actually the most common reason for short-term disability insurance claims according to LIMRA.

However, most poll participants haven’t considered it because they’ve never heard of it. And for those that said they knew what it was, only 50% knew you have to take out short-term disability insurance before pregnancy to get pregnancy covered. It gets counted as pre-existing if taken out while pregnant.