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Pregnancy Discrimination

Females in today’s workplace are confronted with various levels of discrimination and hostility. Women tend to earn lower wages than their male counterparts even when exerting the same quantity and quality of work (i.e., gender discrimination). In addition, there are many industries in which the “glass ceiling” is present, which effectively limits the upward mobility of female executives and employees.

While the idea of motherhood is usually a thrilling concept, the potential response from company management can elicit great anxiety and fear for an expectant mother. Many female employees in this situation have concerns about termination based on how efficiently they are able to work during and after pregnancy.

Discrimination due to pregnancy is a type of gender and disability discrimination. The Family and Medical Leave Act, the Pregnancy Disability Act, the Fair Employment and Housing Act, the California Family Rights Act, among others, afford new and expecting mothers substantial protections. Knowledge of these safeguards is essential to receiving fair and appropriate treatment from your employer.

Pregnancy should be one of the most thrilling times of a woman’s life, not one that is anxiety-ridden. To ensure that you receive fair treatment, contact our discrimination attorneys as soon as you suspect unfair treatment or retaliation. Our team is prepared to explore the facts, gain a full understanding of your workplace guidelines, and help ease the stress that inevitably results from an employer’s mistreatment. We will do everything possible to secure the outcome you desire and deserve.

Are You a Victim of Pregnancy Discrimination?

In many cases, pregnancy discrimination is not as overt as other forms. For example, your manager may respond negatively after announcing your pregnancy. Thereafter, your manager may be more critical of your work, give you unreasonable assignments, attempt to underestimate your work ethic, or undermine your performance. You may even find yourself in situations where colleagues make derogatory remarks about your pregnancy and how it will negatively impact the company. It is also common for employers to fire women during their maternity leave or put them on probation after they return. Odious employers will even replace these women with what they believe are more “suitable” workers –– meaning new workers who have no medical impediment to working.

If you are experiencing similar patterns of unfairness or discrimination at your workplace due to pregnancy, immediately contact an employment discrimination attorney. An attorney will be able to assist you and protect your rights as an employee.

Pregnancy-Related Disability in California

All too often, expectant mothers experience medical complications that stem directly from their pregnancy. These include, but are not limited to, hyperemesis gravidarum (extreme morning sickness), bleeding, gestational diabetes, and preeclampsia. It is unlawful for an employer to undertake discriminatory action against a female employee who suffers from any pregnancy-related medical condition. California law requires companies to provide reasonable accommodations for their pregnant employees, including additional rest breaks and the ability to attend medical appointments during working hours as reasonably needed.

In most cases, it is unlawful for employers to simply eliminate the position for someone on maternity leave, or create a hostile environment upon return, including demotion. Often, employees who take maternity leave must have the opportunity to return to their job in the same position and with the same benefits as before.

Non-Compensated Leave Requirements

The California Family Rights Act provides workers the right to take medical leave in order to attend to a personal health condition, take care of an ailing family member, or care for a new born or adopted child. When an employer denies an employee the opportunity to care for their infant or to address a medical condition, the employee has recourse against the employer for such actions.

California law provides you with the right to take uncompensated leave following the birth of a child without fear of losing your position. It remains unlawful for employers to prevent you from taking a temporary leave or to discriminate against you because of your pregnancy.

Hallmarks of Workplace Pregnancy Discrimination

The following are some frequent instances of workplace pregnancy discrimination:

  • An employee is terminated following the announcement of a pregnancy
  • An employer fails to provide reasonable accommodations for additional break times
  • An employer fails to provide accommodations for pregnancy-related medical appointments
  • An employer refuses to accept physician-ordered duty restrictions
  • An employer declines pregnancy or birth-related leave requests
  • An employer cuts a new mother’s hours or job duties after her return from maternity leave
  • An employee is reassigned to a lesser position after maternity leave and
  • An employee is terminated during or after maternity leave.

Any of these scenarios are indicative of unlawful discrimination and/or harassment due to pregnancy. If one or more of these actions have been taken against you by an employer, contact an experienced employment discrimination attorney immediately. The sooner you hire one, the better your chances of prevailing.

Now is the Time to Seek Justice

Prospective plaintiffs must bear in mind that timing is vital when it comes to initiating and winning pregnancy-related discrimination cases. The statutes of limitations strictly limit the time available to pursue such cases. If that period expires, so will your right to pursue a claim. In addition, with the passage of time, witness recollections fade, documents disappear, and the process of building a strong case becomes more difficult.

West Coast Trial Lawyers Is Here to Help

The best course of action is to secure legal advice immediately upon determining that unfair treatment has or is occurring at your workplace. The skilled pregnancy discrimination lawyers at West Coast Trial Lawyers will do everything possible to construct effective arguments to win your case. Our attorneys are committed to helping victims of pregnancy discrimination receive full vindication, fair compensation, and the peace of mind they deserve during what should be one of the most enjoyable and memorable times of their lives.

If you or a loved one has been wrongfully discriminated against or terminated at work due to pregnancy, immediately contact West Coast Trial Lawyers for a free, no-obligation consultation with a pregnancy discrimination lawyer at our firm. You can reach our legal team 24/7 by calling 1-800-247-9235 or emailing

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