JPMorgan Chase broadened its parental leave policy Thursday. The bank, starting Jan. 1, will give 16 weeks of time off to either parent for the birth or adoption of a child, regardless of whom is the primary caregiver, according to a memo seen by Bloomberg.
The bank is also increasing — to 10, from six — the number of sick days it will offer to its full-time employees, according to the memo. And it is increasing — to 20 days — its bereavement leave for employees over the death of a spouse, domestic partner or child, or for stillbirth or miscarriage, the memo indicated.
JPMorgan employees will also be eligible for up to four weeks of paid time off to care for a seriously ill spouse, domestic partner, child or parent, the bank said Thursday.
JPMorgan’s 16 weeks for parents would put it on par with benefits Bank of America offers, according to Bloomberg. Goldman Sachs, by comparison, offers 20. Citi offers 16 weeks for “birthing” parents and eight weeks for “non-birthing” parents, Bloomberg reported.
The “primary caregiver” clarification may come in recognition of a $5 million settlement JPMorgan agreed to pay in 2019 over a discrimination claim an employee filed, asserting the bank’s policy was biased against fathers.
JPMorgan’s 20-day bereavement total brings it level with Bank of America and Goldman, which announced a similar benefit bump last year. Citi, by contrast, offers 10, Bloomberg reported.
JPMorgan’s 10 sick days put it ahead of Goldman (nine) and Citi (seven) but even with Bank of America’s policy, according to the wire service.
Big banks, over the past two years, have sought to improve their work-life balance offerings in hopes of retaining top talent.
Bank of America in September said it would offer paid four-week sabbaticals, starting next year, to employees who have worked 15 years at the company — with longer time frames for staff that have been onboard for 20 or 30 years.
Goldman, too, last year said it would offer a six-week unpaid sabbatical to employees who have been at the bank for 15 years or more. Citi in 2020 said it would begin offering sabbaticals of up to 12 weeks to employees with five years’ tenure or more. But workers would get just 25% of their base pay during their time away, the bank said.
The policy change JPMorgan announced Thursday is aimed not just at longtime employees but new ones, too — much like elements of Goldman’s last year.
“We wanted to offer a compelling value proposition to current and prospective employees, and wanted to make sure we’re leading, not just competing,” Bentley de Beyer, Goldman’s human resources chief, told The Wall Street Journal in November 2021.