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Employee Pregnancy Discrimination in California

May 1, 2020 | Employee Pregnancy Discrimination

Employment pregnancy discrimination occurs when an employee or job applicant receives less favorable treatment because due to her pregnancy or on the basis that she may someday become pregnant.

Examples of Employment Pregnancy Discrimination

Examples of employment pregnancy discrimination include:

  • demotion;
  • termination;
  • failure to promote;
  • failing to provide a reasonable accommodation;
  • failing to provide leave for pregnancy-related medical conditions;
  • refusing to hire;
  • refusal in education and training; and or
  • refusing bonus and benefit opportunities

What Must the Employee Establish to Prove Pregnancy Discrimination?

An employee or job applicant will have to prove the following elements to establish that the employer engaged in unlawful discrimination:

  • The employer is an entity covered by applicable pregnancy discrimination laws;
  • Employer undertook a negative employment action against the employee;
  • Employee’s or job applicant’s pregnancy, ability to become pregnant, pregnancy-related disability was the main reason for the employer’s action; and
  • Employer’s negative employment action caused harm to the employee

Laws Protecting Pregnancy-Related Leave in California

The five main laws which provide leave rights to pregnant employees and new mothers:

  • The federal Family and Medical Leave Act
  • The California Fair Employment and Housing Act
  • California’s Pregnancy Disability Leave Law
  • The California Family Rights Act
  • The New Parent Leave Act

Each of the above-mentioned laws has its own eligibility requirements, each of them provides leave under different circumstances and for different lengths of time,

California’s Employment Pregnancy Leave

In addition to requiring 4 months of pregnancy leave employers are also required to:

  • Extend the pregnancy leave beyond 4 months using accrued sick leave and vacation time;
  • Hold the employee’s job for at least 4 months (in addition to the twelve weeks required by the California Family Rights Act); and
  • Continue to pay the employer premiums for health insurance that were paid before the pregnancy leave

Los Angeles Pregnancy Discrimination Attorney

If you believe that your employer has discriminated against you on the basis of your pregnancy, we invite you to contact our employment law attorney at 310-933-5171, for a free consultation.