An amendment to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act protects women from discrimination based on their pregnancies, related medical conditions, or childbirth. Women who are pregnant or who have related medical conditions have to be treated the same way as other workers who have similar limitations or abilities. The employment lawyers at Swartz Swidler advocate for women who have been discriminated against at their jobs because of their pregnancies, childbirth, or related medical conditions.
Hiring and pregnancy discrimination
Employers are prohibited from passing over female applicants because of their pregnancies or related conditions if they are able to complete the major tasks of the jobs. Employers can’t turn down applicants simply because of their own prejudices or those of their other employees, customers, or clients.
Employers are prohibited from selecting certain conditions related to pregnancy to under special job-eligibility procedures. Employers are allowed to ask pregnant workers to submit statements from their doctors about their inability to work, however. Employers must treat workers who are temporarily unable to complete their job duties because of pregnancy in the same manner as they treat other employees who have temporary disabilities. They might offer job duty modifications, disability leave, medical leave, or alternative assignments.
Employers must allow pregnant workers to continue working as long as they are able to perform the duties of their jobs. If a worker took leave because of a pregnancy-related medical condition and then recovers, the employer can’t require her to stay on leave until after her child is born. Employers are also prohibited from mandating that women who give birth must stay away from work for specific durations before they can return. Employers must also hold the jobs of women who take leave based on their pregnancies for the same amount of time that they hold the jobs for other workers who are on disability or sick leave.
Health insurance benefits
Employer-provided health insurance must pay for the expenses for pregnancy and related conditions the same way as it pays for other medical conditions. The expenses that are related to pregnancy should be paid for in the same manner as for other medical conditions. The insurance provider may not require that pregnant women pay larger deductibles for their insurance. Employers must give the same health benefits to female workers and female spouses of male workers as they provide for male workers or male spouses of female employees.
Employers may not limit the pregnancy benefits that they offer to married workers. If the workforce consists entirely of women, the benefits for pregnancy conditions must be provided if they are provided for other types of medical conditions. Workers who are temporarily disabled because of pregnancy-related conditions must be treated by their employers in the same manner as other employees who suffer from temporary disabilities for fringe benefits.
Get legal help
If you have been turned down for a job or have suffered workplace discrimination because of pregnancy, childbirth, or a pregnancy-related condition, you should talk to an experienced employment lawyer at Swartz Swidler. Call us today for a free evaluation of your potential claim.