{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "Currently a few weeks left on parental leave and have had a potential opportunity come up with a smaller firm that I think makes more sense for my career goals. The question I have is: assuming I get an offer and the details work out, how do I navigate leaving? Should I provide notice right away? Go back to my current firm for a couple weeks and then give notice? I certainly don’t want to burn bridges. How would you feel on the other side?", "post_id": "60fbf340349d8100247230ed", "reply_count": 10, "vote_count": 3, "bowl_id": "5df70ed2f7169f002b172d3f", "bowl_name": "Big Law" }

Currently a few weeks left on parental leave and have had a potential opportunity come up with a smaller firm that I think makes more sense for my career goals. The question I have is: assuming I get an offer and the details work out, how do I navigate leaving? Should I provide notice right away? Go back to my current firm for a couple weeks and then give notice? I certainly don’t want to burn bridges. How would you feel on the other side?

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I’m assuming they’ve already staffed out your matters to other people while on parental leave; if you went back for a few weeks and then left, wouldn’t you be making more work for them? I feel like the transition from “I’m not here now” to “and I’m never returning” might be easier for everyone involved.

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I think it’s common to have associates leave after coming back from mat leave. I’ve seen in 3 or 4 times in the past year. They usually come back for a few weeks then announce that they are leaving. Usually it’s to go to a smaller firm/government/in-house, so we all celebrate.

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Check that your firm doesn’t have a policy that makes you “pay back” your leave if you don’t come back for a certain amount of time.

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I know my firm doesn’t do this. Which is why I am curious who does.

This question gets asked in various bowls regularly. People leave shortly after parental leave all the time. Most firms come to worry/anticipate it and they don’t take it personally. You should do what you wanna do.

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OP, how long have you been out?

A couple of weeks. I get six weeks of leave

Do what’s comfortable for you. I usually saw people come back after maternity/parental leave and then give notice so they work for 1 mo and done. Of that 1 mo is usually just helping out here and there and catching up/celebrating.

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