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Macpherson Kelley launches updated 20-week parental leave policy

East coast-based law firm Macpherson Kelley has updated its diversity, equity and inclusion policies. The firm will now be offering up to 20 weeks of paid parental leave for the primary carer, which will include superannuation contributions on both paid and unpaid leave.

user iconAdrian Suljanovic 08 June 2022 SME Law
Macpherson Kelley launches updated 20-week parental leave policy
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Macpherson Kelley’s updated policies follow the recent trend of other law firms taking measures to improve their leave policies in a post-pandemic world. Those firms include Bartier Perry, K&L Gates, and Gilbert + Tobin.

Grant Guenther, national managing principal lawyer at Macpherson, believes that these updates are a “step in the right direction” in regards to addressing the gender pay gap via continued contributions to superannuation throughout parental leave. He added that employees should not be expected to “make professional sacrifices” when deciding to become parents.

“We want to lead by example in this space.


“As leaders, it’s our responsibility to support our staff through every stage of their life – professionally and personally,” said Mr Guenther.

Along with its parental leave and superannuation policies, Macpherson has also announced that it will be committing to a fertility leave policy to support staff undertaking fertility treatments, as well as implementing a public holiday swap policy, which will give employees the option of taking leave to “celebrate holidays that are meaningful to them”.

Mr Guenther said: “We want to invest in our people and facilitate an environment where everyone can bring their best selves to work, which in turn will have a positive impact on talent attraction, retention and client service. All staff should feel as though they are supported and given a fair opportunity to have a successful career with the firm.”

Although women make up 60 per cent of Macpherson’s workforce along with comprising a third of their equity holders and leadership roles, national human resources manager Olivia Holmes commented that the “journey is far from over” and that “there is always more work to be done”.

“Formalising our diversity, equity and inclusion commitment ensures that we are proactively promoting an inclusive workplace where all employees feel supported, included and empowered.

“We will have more initiatives under our DEI commitment and strive to continue to be at the forefront of diversity, equity and inclusion in our market and in our industry,” said Ms Holmes.

These policy updates are just another example and a continuation of Macpherson Kelley’s commitment to giving its employees a flexible and inclusive work environment. Notably, the firm had implemented a work-from-home program (known as Flex+) before the COVID-19 pandemic began.  

Ms Holmes stated that the firm wants its workforce to “reflect the socially and culturally diverse country we live in” and for Macpherson’s policies to keep up with current social climates.

“This commitment is our promise to staff that their job won’t get in the way of enjoying life’s most important milestones – whether it be starting a family or enjoying a cultural holiday with the people they love,” she said.