Pregnancy Discrimination: What Should I Look Out For?

We have been reporting a lot recently about pregnancy discrimination, which is illegal under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA), as the Supreme Court is taking up the case of a former UPS driver who said the company would not accommodate her. Photo of Employee Handbook and Forms

Any Supreme Court ruling could have a tremendous ripple effect on future pregnancy discrimination claims. According to the Wall Street Journal, the court is currently attempting to clarify the meaning of the PDA, which requires employers to treat pregnant women the same as nonpregnant employees.

The driver claims that after she became pregnant in 2006, the company would not accommodate her doctor-recommended work restrictions involving lifting weights, which forced her into an unpaid leave. As a result, she claims that she lost her medical coverage.

According to the Journal, UPS is arguing that its policies do not discriminate, because they provide accommodations for workers who are injured on the job, but not those who face “lifting restrictions because of off-the-job medical conditions.”

A ruling on the case is not expected until June 2015. According to the Journal, UPS has said in arguments that only nine states have passed laws that require accommodations for pregnant workers, although others are considering similar measures.

Can I File a Lawsuit If I Am Subjected to Pregnancy Discrimination?

If you believe that you have been subjected to discrimination at the workplace because of your pregnancy, you should speak to our attorneys. Obviously, there are very complex legal arguments that need to be made in any pregnancy discrimination case.

Remember, if an employee is unable to perform her job due to pregnancy, an employer must treat her like any other temporarily disabled employee.

You should keep an eye out for issues at the workplace when you are pregnant; this includes paying attention to hiring techniques, leave, insurance complications and potentially limited benefits.

Kesluk, Silverstein & JacobLos Angeles employment attorneys