News » JP Morgan Settles Parental Leave For Dads Lawsuit

JP Morgan Settles Parental Leave For Dads Lawsuit

Photo of a young father holding his newborn son, singing some lullabies while putting him to sleep

June 10, 2019

In the first class action settlement arising from a lawsuit claiming that fathers were denied parental leave benefits because of gender, JPMorgan Chase agreed on May 30 to pay $5 million to a group of male employees. Lawyers for the ACLU, one of the organizations that brought the suit on the employees’ behalf, say that about 5,000 fathers were denied extended leave. JPMorgan’s paid parental leave policy is generous on paper. It offers 16 weeks of paid leave for a child’s primary caregiver and two weeks off for secondary caregivers. However, fathers who tried to take up to 16 weeks off as primary caregivers were discouraged by managers, who said that the company considers mothers the main caregivers. According to the employee whose EEOC complaint was the impetus for the suit, human resources staff told him that “birth mothers are what we consider as the primary caregivers.” He was told that as a father he needed to prove that his wife had returned to work for him to get more than two weeks of paid leave. He has since been granted 16 weeks off. The settlement compensates all fathers who were denied extended paid leave between 2011 and 2017. A senior attorney for the ACLU said she expects the settlement to have a ripple effect.

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