Through a combination of federal acts, employees across the United States enjoy certain benefits and freedoms concerning pregnancy. In general terms, employers are not allowed to discriminate against pregnant employees. Stated otherwise, an employer is not allowed to use pregnancy as a reason for adverse treatment.
HKM Employment Attorneys in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, has garnered numerous awards for protecting employee rights. Combining a national presence with a local emphasis, HKM Employment Attorneys have experience representing employees against all types of employers, from small business to Fortune 500. If you need legal help with pregnancy discrimination in the workplace, contact us today to start planning your legal strategy.
Freedom from Pregnancy Discrimination and Harassment
The Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA) provides employees with federal-level protections concerning childbirth. Specifically, the PDA prevents employers from making employment decisions solely based on pregnancy. From a legal standpoint, the employment decision can include recruitment, promotion and similar work-related actions.
Additionally, the PDA bars employers from harassing employees based on pregnancy, though it is important to note that harassment must be continuous and pervasive to trigger PDA protections. If the employee suffers constant mistreatment based on pregnancy, it qualifies as unlawful employment discrimination.
Protections for Disability or Handicap Related to Pregnancy
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) protects employees who sustain a disability or handicap during pregnancy. If the employee suffers from a temporary impairment related pregnancy, the employer must treat her in the same way as any other temporarily disabled employee. Once the impairment heals, the employee can return to a full working capacity.
If the employee suffers from a long-term or permanent impairment, the ADA may provide benefits, as well. In certain cases, the employer is required to provide reasonable accommodations, including but not limited to extended leave or modified work duties.
Ultimately, it does not matter if an employee suffers from a temporary or long-term impairment. So long as the pregnancy-related impairment qualifies under the ADA, the employee has the right to freedom from employment discrimination.
Parental Leave to Care for a New Child
Under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), a new parent is eligible for 12 weeks of leave to care for a new child. This feature of the FMLA is not limited to the birth parent. The same benefit is available to foster and adoptive parents as well, but there is an eligibility requirement. The employee must render at least 12 months of service before he or she is eligible for parental leave under the FMLA.
Contact a Pennsylvania Employment Lawyer Today
If you suffered unlawful employment discrimination based on pregnancy in Pennsylvania, it can be distinctly beneficial to contact a reliable employment attorney. With extensive experience protecting against pregnancy-related discrimination in the workplace, HKM Employment Attorneys are well-positioned to safeguard your rights. If you need legal help with pregnancy discrimination in the workplace, contact us today for an initial consultation.