Receiving the proper time and amount of maternity leave seems like a difficult task, especially with rapidly changing employment laws recently. However, if you are a California resident that is pregnant or planning on becoming pregnant, you have state and federal rights that will allow you to take pregnancy leave. Unfortunately, many businesses will not properly follow pregnancy leave laws, or will take advantage of you if you don’t know your rights. Here are some employment rights you or someone you know should be aware of as a pregnant woman.
What Does The Law Say?
Besides the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which mostly every U.S worker follows, California workers have additional pregnancy employment laws, such as the California Family Rights Act (CRFA) and the Pregnancy Disability Leave Law for paid and unpaid leave. Under the CFRA, which is California’s version of the FMLA, a pregnant employee is allowed to take 12 weeks off of work, unpaid. Fathers in California can seek unpaid paternity leave under the FMLA. If you become temporarily disabled during your pregnancy and can’t perform your regular work duties, you are allowed an additional four months of unpaid maternity leave under the Pregnancy Disability Leave. Most California employers require their employees to carry short-term disability insurance, or SDI. This will protect you as a pregnant and disabled employee and will offer paid time off. You may qualify for paid family leave, depending on your employer and your earnings percentage.
What Are My Legal Rights?
According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA), no employer is allowed to fire a pregnant woman for the sole reason of being pregnant, nor are they allowed to harass a pregnant woman while on the job. If you or someone you know feels that their rights have been violated, you can conduct an investigation and file a charge against your employer.
Contact the employment attorneys at Kesluk, Silverstein & Jacob if you need help getting the full pregnancy leave you deserve, or if you’d like to submit a claim for pregnancy discrimination.