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Sample Maternity Leave Letter

Fill in the Blanks to Create a Winning Maternity Leave Request


Before creating your personalized maternity leave letter, you must first determine how much maternity leave to request and decide whether you want to request a gradual return to work. Most importantly, understand your company policies and make sure you don't propose anything that would give you less money or fewer benefits than you're entitled to. Edit the letter below as needed to fit your employer's policies.

Where you see (parentheses), you should insert the appropriate words or phrases for your circumstances. Instructions are noted in italics and should be deleted from the final letter before you submit it.

Maternity Leave Memo for (Your Name)

To (Your Supervisor)


This letter is to formally inform you I am pregnant (or in the process of adopting a child) and wish to take maternity leave. I expect the leave to last (fill in the number) weeks and to begin on (date you wish leave to commence).

As you know, I take great pride in my performance and the quality of my work for (Employer). To ensure my job responsibilities will be managed during the period that I am away from the office, I am making the following proposal for work coverage, communications during leave and my return to work.

I consider this proposal the beginning of a conversation and welcome your input. I will let you know if I believe this plan should be revised, given that the date my maternity leave begins depends in part on health factors beyond my control.

Current Work

I plan to complete these projects before my maternity leave commences:

  • (Project 1)
  • (Project 2)
  • (Project 3 or more)

The following projects or job responsibilities can wait until I return from leave:

  • (Project 1)
  • (Project 2)
  • (Project 3 or more)

Work Needing Coverage

The following projects or job duties will need to be covered during my absence:

  • (Project or duty 1)
  • (Project or duty 2)
  • (Project or duty 3 or more)

You may want to recommend a specific co-worker or two with the skills and experience to take over on your projects. Or, inquire about whether the company might hire a temporary employee whom you could train well ahead of your due date.

Next page: communications during leave and plans for returning to work.

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