Pregnancy Discrimination Age Discrimination Let Rob Help

PREGNANCY DISCRIMINATION

The Pregnancy Discrimination Act requires that a covered employer treat women affected by pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions in the same manner as other applicants or employees who are similar in their ability or inability to work. The PDA covers all aspects of employment, including firing, hiring, promotions, and fringe benefits (such as leave and health insurance benefits). Pregnant workers are protected from discrimination based on current pregnancy, past pregnancy, and potential pregnancy.

 

  • Current pregnancy. Under the PDA, an employer cannot fire, refuse to hire, demote, or take any other adverse action against a woman if pregnancy, childbirth, or a related medical condition was a motivating factor in the adverse employment action.

 

  • Past Pregnancy. An employer may not discriminate against an employee or applicant based on a past pregnancy or pregnancy-related medical condition or childbirth. For example, an employer may not fire a woman because of pregnancy during or at the end of her maternity leave.

 

  • Potential Pregnancy. An employer may not discriminate based on an employee’s intention or potential to become pregnant. For example, an employer may not exclude a woman from a job involving processing certain chemicals out of concern that exposure would be harmful to a baby if the employee became pregnant. Concerns about risks to a pregnant employee or her baby will rarely, if ever, justify sex-specific job restrictions for a woman of childbearing capacity.

 

  • Medical Condition Related to Pregnancy or Childbirth. An employer may not discriminate against an employee because of a medical condition related to pregnancy and must treat the employee the same as others who are similar in their ability or inability to work but are not affected by pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions. For example, under the PDA, since lactation is a medical condition related to pregnancy, an employer may not discriminate against an employee because of her breastfeeding schedule.

OTHER LAWS AFFECTING PREGNANT WORKERS

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows eligible employees of employers with 50 or more employees to take up to 12 workweeks of leave for the birth and care of the employee’s child. Employers also restore the employee to the employee’s original job or to an equivalent job with equivalent pay, benefits, and other terms and conditions of employment.

Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) – Although pregnancy itself is not a disability, pregnant workers may have impairments related to their pregnancies that qualify as disabilities under the ADA, such as pregnancy-related carpal tunnel syndrome, gestational diabetes, pregnancy-related sciatica, and preeclampsia. An employer may not discriminate against an individual whose pregnancy-related impairment is a disability under the ADA and must provide an individual with a reasonable accommodation if needed because of a pregnancy-related disability, unless the employer can prove that the accommodation would result in significant difficulty or expense (“undue hardship”).

The Affordable Care Act requires employers to provide “reasonable break time” for hourly employees to express breast milk until the child’s first birthday. Employers are required to provide “a place, other than a bathroom, that is shielded from view and free from intrusion from coworkers and the public, which may be used by an employee to express breast milk.” Employers with fewer than 50 employees are not subject to this requirement if it “would impose an undue hardship by causing significant difficulty or expense when considered in relation to the size, nature, or structure of the employer’s business.”  

As the father of seven children, Rob has always been sensitive to pregnancy discrimination. Rob has litigated pregnancy discrimination cases for Georgia employees under the PDA, FMLA, and ADA. Contact Rob to speak to a Georgia pregnancy discrimination lawyer about your specific situation.

Contact Rob for Help

To obtain a free case evaluation, please call Rob or complete an online Case Evaluation Form. All responses will be kept strictly confidential.

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