Is a woman on unpaid leave, after childbirth, entitled to unemployment benefits?

​Unemployment benefits are paid to a person who became unemployed and seeks another job, so long as another work has been found for him by the Employment Service.  
A woman who went of unpaid leave after giving birth is not a job seeker since she already has a place of work to which she is entitled to return. 
She chose to take an unpaid vacation to take care of her newborn, rightfully so under the Employment of Women Law, and she is therefore not eligible for unemployment benefit during that period.  
Only when it turns out that the woman asked to resume work for the same employer at the time she went on unpaid leave, and he refused to take her back, then she may be entitled to unemployment benefits from the day of employer's refusal to take her back to work.
However, a woman who took an unpaid leave after birth for justified reasons may be entitled to unemployment benefits.

Examples of justified reasons to take an unpaid leave:

  • Her health condition or that of a family member (spouse, parents, child, grandson, sibling).
  • A workplace located at a distance of above 40 km from her place of residence, or to which regular public transportation is not available.
  • Working hours are not customary, meaning a work with extensive hours (above 8 hours per day), work in shifts or split work.
  • When the employer cannot or is not willing to employ the new mother in a "mother job", as is required by the Employment of Women Law.
  • When the employer made tangible worsening of work conditions, in comparison with the conditions of work existing before she took her maternity leave.