Quitting your job after maternity leave

What do you need to know about quitting your job after maternity leave?

You can quit your job at any time during or after maternity leave unless you are a contract employee or on Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). Contract employees must carry out the term of their contract or break their contract under the terms. FMLA maternity leave requires you to work for 30 days after leave or you may have to pay back insurance premiums.

Imagine, being able to quit your job at the end of your maternity leave. You’ve decided to become a full-time stay at home parent, awesome!

You can quit your job during or after maternity leave with the right conditions.

Luckily for you, I’ll show you how long you have to wait after returning from maternity leave. I’ll show you what you need to consider or what happens if you were forced to resign. You’ll know everything you need to know about quitting after maternity leave!

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How long after returning from maternity leave can I quit?

You can quit your job at any time during maternity leave as long as you are not under contract or Family Medical Leave Act. Quitting your job early when under contract will hold you to the terms of the contract for early termination. FMLA maternity leave requires you to work a minimum of 30 days or you may have to pay back insurance premiums.

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What happens if I quit my job after maternity leave?

In most cases, you are able to quit your job after maternity leave without repercussions. However, FMLA leave may require insurance premiums to be paid back if quitting within 30 days of returning to work. Contract employees are still held liable to the terms of their contract.

Feel free to quit anytime if you are not on FMLA or a contract employee.

Contract employees are required to perform the work scope of their contract until the expiration of the contract. For example, you might be on year 2 of 3 of your contract and unable to quit. In some cases, the contract will have terms if you wish to break the agreement early.

Do I have to pay back maternity pay if I resign?

Employers may require you to pay back insurance premiums if your maternity leave was covered under Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). FMLA premiums do not have to be repaid if you work for 30 days or more after maternity leave. You do not owe anything if you are not on FMLA and decide to quit.

Keep in mind, it is up to the company to decide if they want to collect the insurance premiums for quitting early. Not only do you have to pay back your insurance premiums, but the companies as well.

Insurance premiums are not cheap. Therefore, it’s usually best to wait a minimum of 30 days before quitting your job.

Can you go on unemployment after maternity leave?

You can go on unemployment after maternity leave if you are fired or otherwise terminated from your position. However, you cannot go on unemployment after maternity leave if you quit. Some states will allow you to take unemployment for a good cause reason.

In some cases, you may come back from maternity leave and your position was filled by someone else. The company forced you out of your position, so you should be able to collect unemployment.

However, you can’t just quit your job without a good reason and collect unemployment. Unemployment is designed to support people with unique or unforeseen situations that result in a loss of income. 

Simply quitting because you don’t want to work or to be a stay at home parent doesn’t usually cut it.

You should check your individual states requirements for unemployment. Some states offer unemployment for a good cause. For example, a good cause reason might include the following:

  1. You quit for another job.
  2. A family member or yourself became sick or disabled.
  3. You are protecting yourself from domestic violence or stalking.
  4. Your employer changed the terms of your employment or cut pay or hours.
  5. Your employer is neglecting safety or performing illegal activities.

What happens if I’m forced to resign after maternity leave?

You may apply for unemployment if you are forced to resign after maternity leave. In some cases, you may be able to sue your employer for pregnancy discrimination. Consult legal counsel if your hours were cut, position changed, or you were terminated after maternity leave.

When to tell your boss you’re not returning from maternity leave?

You should not quit your job for at least 30 days after returning from maternity leave that was covered under Family Medical Leave Act. Contractors should carry out the remainder of their contract or review the terms to break it. Otherwise, you are able to quit your job at any time, including maternity leave.

The most considerate thing to do would be to return to work for at least a month. While not required, most employers would appreciate a two weeks notice.

What happens if I’m on maternity leave and get pregnant again?

Nothing out of the ordinary happens if you are on maternity leave and get pregnant again. You will be entitled to another maternity leave when your next child is born. Your employer cannot deny your request for a second maternity leave.

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Summary: Quitting job after maternity leave

As you can see, it is ok to quit your job after maternity leave. However, you need to be aware of FMLA requirements or contract terms if you’re a contract employee. 

Maternity leave covered under Family Medical Leave Act requires you to work 30 days after returning from leave. Failure to work your 30 days may result in the company requiring you to pay all insurance premiums.

Contract employees have signed a legally binding contract which has an expiration of terms. You cannot quit your contract midway through unless there is a clause which allows you to do so.

You may go on unemployment after maternity leave if your employer changes your employment agreement, cuts hours, or you get fired. However, check your state’s unemployment criteria. You cannot go on unemployment for simply quitting your job to not work.

Tell your boss you want to quit after one month of returning to work. Technically, you can quit any time if you’re not on FMLA or contract employee. However, the considerate thing to do is work a little longer and provide two weeks notice.

Getting pregnant while on maternity leave is acceptable when it comes to your employment. Your employer should give you another maternity leave when your next child is born.