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Parental leave refers to a period of time off from work that is granted to employees who become new parents, either through the birth or adoption of a child. The purpose of parental leave is to allow parents to bond with their child and to handle the many responsibilities that come with caring for a new baby, without having to worry about work obligations.

In many countries, including the United States, parental leave is not mandated by law and is instead left up to individual employers to decide whether or not to offer it, and how much time to offer. In some cases, parental leave may be paid, while in others it may be unpaid.