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Vesting periods are the period of time involved in achieving full rights or privileges associated with a profit-sharing program offered by an employer .4 years with a one year cliff is the typical vesting schedule for startup founders’ stock. Under a 4 years with a one year cliff schedule, founders vest shares over a four year period. Because of the one year cliff, the founders will not vest any shares until the first anniversary of the founders stock issuance. Upon the one-year anniversary, the founders will each vest 25% of their total shares. Vesting will usually occur monthly after the cliff..