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Best countries for working moms and dads

These countries offer generous benefits for parents, making it easier for working mothers and fathers to balance work and family.


In Sweden, maternity leave can extend for several years, and be shared by a mother and father. Parents with children under age 8 also have the right to reduce to a part-time schedule and keep their jobs.

The government entitles parents to a combined 480 days of leave, at around 80% pay, and the timing is flexible.

For example, a woman who makes about $39,000 a year (average in the U.S.), would be entitled to $2,500 a month for six-and-a-half months, with the option to extend the leave to 13 months if she takes half the benefit, or longer if she takes less than that.

Parents can also save up their time and use it at any point until the child's eighth birthday.

Use this tool to see what your parental leave would look like in Sweden. Remember, one U.S. dollar equals about 6.5 Swedish kronor.

Source: We used data from the Central Intelligence Agency and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation to compare female employment rates, length of work weeks and fertility rates, and then looked at parental leave policies by country.
  @AnnalynKurtz - Last updated August 13 2013 10:43 AM ET

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