Pregnancy Discrimination

Pregnancy Discrimination Attorney in Jacksonville

Causes of Discrimination Based on Pregnancy

Pregnancy is not the most common cause of discrimination in the workplace, but it is still a present reality that must be addressed. An employee's pregnancy may be viewed by the employer as a hindrance to productivity, especially because of the employee's need to care for the child after birth. Even though many employers offer maternity leave as a benefit or as required pursuant to the Family and Medical Leave Act, an employee's pregnancy can trigger adverse reactions.

An employer's discriminatory actions may be motivated by the need to find a temporary replacement or provide coverage during the employee's maternity leave. Schedule a case evaluation for legal representation with Jacksonville Employment Lawyer, Shands Wulbern.

Employers may also have concerns of increased insurance costs resulting from pregnancy in addition to family health benefit coverage after the birth of a new child. An employer's business concerns about a pregnant employee's productivity and added labor costs can often lead to discrimination.

Examples of Pregnancy Discrimination

Pregnancy discrimination may take many forms, including, but not limited to:

  • Harassment
  • Termination
  • Hostile work environment
  • Discipline
  • Demotion
  • Reduced authority
  • Reduced responsibility
  • Pay reductions
  • Passed over for promotions
  • Lost employment opportunities
  • Unfavorable treatment

Even if the discrimination only originates from lower-level supervisors or co-workers, the employer may still be liable for discrimination.

What Accommodations or Protections Are Employers Required to Provide to Pregnant Employees?

Employers are required to provide accommodations and protections to pregnant employees to ensure their well-being and equal treatment in the workplace. 

Here are some of the accommodations and protections that employers may be required to provide:

  • Reasonable Accommodations: Under the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA) or other relevant laws, employers may be obligated to provide reasonable accommodations to pregnant employees. These accommodations can include adjustments to work schedules, modified duties, light duty assignments, additional breaks, seating, or temporary transfers to less strenuous or hazardous positions.
  • Leave Benefits: Employers may need to provide pregnancy-related leave, such as maternity leave, parental leave, or medical leave for pregnancy-related conditions. The duration and eligibility for such leave may vary depending on applicable laws and company policies.
  • Health Insurance Coverage: Employers typically need to continue providing health insurance coverage for pregnant employees, including prenatal care, childbirth, and postpartum care. This coverage may include doctor visits, ultrasounds, delivery expenses, and postnatal care.
  • Non-Discrimination and Equal Treatment: Pregnant employees should be protected from discrimination based on their pregnancy status. Employers must treat pregnant employees the same as other similarly situated employees regarding pay, promotions, and other employment benefits.
  • Privacy and Confidentiality: Employers should ensure the privacy and confidentiality of pregnancy-related information shared by employees. Disclosing such information without consent may violate privacy rights.

About the Pregnancy Discrimination Act

The federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act makes it unlawful for employers with at least 15 or more employees to discriminate against an employee on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions. In addition, certain medical conditions associated with pregnancy may qualify as disabilities and therefore require employers to make accommodations pursuant to the Americans with Disabilities Act. These laws also require that charges of discrimination be filed with the appropriate administrative agency in accordance with strict filing deadlines.

Gain a better understanding of your legal rights by obtaining counsel from the Jacksonville employment lawyer at the Law Office of Shands M. Wulbern, P.A. By seeking legal advice from a lawyer who has experience in advising and litigating pregnancy discrimination claims, you can protect your rights.

If you believe you are the victim of pregnancy discrimination in the workplace or have a legal issue involving a potential pregnancy discrimination claim, contact Attorney Shands M. Wulbern by calling (904) 638-9943 at once.