Family Medical Leave Act/Pregnancy Discrimination
Employers may not discriminate on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions. This commonly happens due to the fact that employers fear that the employee will lose productivity, believe that the employee will require too many accommodations once she returns to work, and fear that they will not be able to afford the costs associated in replacing a pregnant employee while she is on leave.
However, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) is an amendment to Title Vii of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Women affected by pregnancy or related conditions must be treated in the same manner as other employees who are similar in their ability or inability to work. Employers must hold open a job for a pregnancy-related absence the same length of time that jobs are held open for employees on sick or temporary disability leave. Pregnancy discrimination occurs when someone is discriminated against, fired or not hired because of pregnancy, or intention to become pregnant.
In the U.S., the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (“FMLA”) mandates up to 12 weeks of (potentially unpaid) job-protected leave for various “medical and family situations” including parental leave. During this period of leave, an employer may not place your position at jeopardy of being lost. However, not all companies must follow the rules of the FMLA.
If you have or are experiencing pregnancy discrimination or if your employer has denied you of your FMLA rights, contact us online or call us at 954-384-6114 to schedule a confidential consultation so that we can assess your case and explain to you the legal options that are available to you.