Los Angeles Pregnancy Discrimination Attorney
The birth of a child is an exciting and often stressful time for parents, and working employees may fret at the thought of balancing a career with caring for a newborn. There are several laws in place that not only protect American parents’ rights to work, but also prevent them from facing any negative actions for becoming pregnant or taking time off to care for a newborn.
Expectant parents have plenty to worry about without having to handle employers who treat them unfairly or unlawfully. It is important to know the laws surrounding employee pregnancies, pregnancy leave, and discrimination against pregnant employees so you can protect yourself in case an employer breaks these laws. Read through the following information about California residents’ rights concerning pregnancy leave, and reach out to a qualified Los Angeles pregnancy leave attorney if you think your rights have been violated.
If you find yourself in such a situation, reach out to the Los Angeles maternity leave attorneys at Mathew & George. Our team of LA employment lawyers maintain a small caseload to ensure every client receives the attention that they deserve. We will put the full range of our skill and resources at your disposal, so reach out to our team to set up a free consultation about your pregnancy leave case today.
Your Rights for Pregnancy Leave
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) guarantees American employees of most businesses unpaid, job-secure leave in the event of a personal emergency, such as an immediate family member’s severe illness or the birth of a child. Many states have additional laws concerning pregnancy laws – including California. Under the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) and the California Family Rights Act (CFRA), private employers with 50 or more employees within 75 miles of a worksite and all public employers must allow eligible employees to take up to a maximum of 12 workweeks’ worth of leave in any one-year period.
Additionally, the FEHA in California dictates that private employers with five or more employees must provide up to four months of maternity leave. Public employers with any size workforce must also allow this. Unlike other forms of leave, the pregnant employee is not required to have worked for the employer for any particular amount of time, and full-time or part-time status does not apply.
An “eligible employee” is defined in California as any employee who has worked for an employer for at least 1,250 hours in the previous year and whose situation meets the requirements for leave under FMLA. The birth of a child is a qualifying situation, and both parents may take FMLA leave. If both parents have the same employer, however, the employer may require that they split the 12-workweek allotment.
Los Angeles Pregnancy Discrimination Lawyers
Discrimination based on an individual’s race, skin color, religion, disability, age, or sex is illegal. Pregnancy discrimination is a form of gender discrimination. It is illegal for an employer to make any employment-related decisions such as hiring, firing, promotion, pay increase or decrease, changes in benefit coverage, or other similar factors based solely on an employee’s pregnancy. If you believe you’ve been discriminated against because of your pregnancy, contact a discrimination lawyer in LA as soon as possible.
Additionally, an employer cannot fire an employee simply because she becomes pregnant. Doing so would be considered wrongful termination. Pregnancy is protected under the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), and employers found in violation of EEOC laws face heavy costs and possible punitive damages. Denying pregnancy leave or forcing a pregnant employee to resign rather than take FMLA leave are forms of sexual discrimination—and are illegal.
Hire a Pregnancy Leave Lawyer in LA
If you believe you have suffered pregnancy discrimination or an employer has interfered with your ability to secure FMLA leave for the birth and care of your child, you need to find a maternity leave lawyer to help you navigate the process of filing a complaint. The EEOC handles workplace discrimination claims and FMLA violations. The EEOC will launch an investigation into your situation after it receives your complaint.
In almost every case, the EEOC will issue the complainant a “right to sue” letter that enables the employee to pursue a lawsuit against an employer in violation. If you have received a “right to sue” letter, need help with the process, or just have questions about your case—the Los Angeles pregnancy leave attorneys at Mathew & George can help. Call us today for a free initial consultation.