Walnut Creek Pregnancy Discrimination Lawyers
Pregnancy Discrimination Lawyer in Walnut Creek
Pregnancy discrimination can take many forms, such as an employee not being allowed to take adequate pregnancy leave or being fired due to pregnancy.
Pregnant women and new mothers are an essential part of the workplace. California law protects employees from discrimination based on pregnancy or childbirth. The Walnut Creek employment attorneys at Erlich Law Firm are dedicated to standing up for workers who have suffered pregnancy discrimination in the workplace. If you suspect your employer has violated your pregnancy-related employment rights, our experienced lawyers can help you pursue just compensation.
California Pregnancy Leave Laws
Walnut Creek employees are entitled to pregnancy leave under California law. Because several laws govern pregnancy leave, determining which ones apply to you is not always straightforward. An employment lawyer can help you understand your rights and what type of leave you are entitled to take.
- California Pregnancy Disability Leave Law (PDL): All pregnant women in the state are guaranteed up to four months of job-protected disability leave from work. It does not matter how long you have been employed or how many hours you work. The law applies to employers with at least five employees.
The leave can be taken before or after childbirth, either in one go or in increments. Also, any pregnancy-related time off counts toward the four months of PDL. Although employers do not have to pay workers during PDL, they must continue providing company-sponsored health benefits during pregnancy.
Workers must give their employer 30-days’ notice before going on pregnancy leave. If there is a medical emergency, the employee should provide notice as soon as possible.
- The California New Parent Leave Act and California Family Rights Act (CFRA) allow some employees to qualify for twelve weeks of leave in addition to the four months provided under PDL. The mother can take additional time off, which can be used for infant bonding up until a year after the child’s birth.
Walnut Creek, Pleasant Hill, Dublin, Pleasanton, and other nearby employees are eligible for this leave only if they have been employed in their current job for at least a year or have completed 1,250 hours prior to their departure. The law only applies to employers with at least twenty employees.
Time Off for Infant Bonding
Pregnancy leave is not just limited to the period before childbirth. Qualifying workers can also take an extra twelve weeks of unpaid, job-protected family medical leave for infant bonding under the CFRA and the federal Family and Medical Leave Act. As a result, some employees can take up to almost seven months of maternity leave.
Reasonable Accommodations During Pregnancy
Under California law, pregnant workers in Walnut Creek have the right to request reasonable accommodations in the workplace if they are temporarily unable to carry out specific tasks due to pregnancy and its related conditions. In such situations, employers must treat pregnant employees similarly to temporarily disabled workers.
Reasonable accommodations are modifications that allow a disabled worker to keep working. They look different for each employee based on her individual needs. Some standard, reasonable accommodations include a more comfortable chair, weight limit for lifting objects, flexibility with the work schedule, less strenuous tasks, transfer to a less demanding position, or modified job duties. New mothers may also ask their employer for accommodations for breastfeeding, such as a private area and extra breaks.
If an employer refuses to discuss reasonable accommodations with a pregnant worker who requests them, it may be considered pregnancy and disability discrimination. An employment lawyer can help you determine whether your employer’s actions meet the legal standards for discriminatory behavior.
What Happens When A Mother Returns to Work After Taking Leave?
A worker returning from pregnancy leave and resumes working within the legally mandated timeframe is guaranteed a return to her previous position. The job must have the same salary and benefits as before the leave of absence.
If the same job is no longer available upon the employee’s return to work, the employer is required to provide a similar position. The job must have comparable pay, promotional opportunities, and job duties unless the employer can prove that no such position is available within the company.
Firing a new mother because she took pregnancy leave is unlawful. The employer also may not reduce the employee’s salary or take other adverse actions against her for taking pregnancy leave. However, the law does not protect workers from being laid off for reasons unrelated to the pregnancy. An employment lawyer can help determine whether you were subjected to wrongful termination.
What are Some Ways in Which Pregnancy Discrimination Occurs?
There are a variety of ways in which employers may behave unlawfully toward a pregnant worker who plans to take maternity leave or request reasonable accommodations. Some examples of how pregnancy discrimination can happen in Walnut Creek workplaces include:
- Failing to provide reasonable accommodations
- Harassing a pregnant employee
- Refusing to hire a job applicant due to pregnancy
- Firing a pregnant worker in retaliation for taking leave
- Denying or limiting pregnancy leave
- Demoting a new mother
What Workers Can Do to Fight Pregnancy Discrimination
With an ever-growing number of women working during and after pregnancy, it is more important than ever to understand the laws around pregnancy-related employment rights. If you suspect pregnancy discrimination in the workplace, you should reach out to an experienced Walnut Creek employment lawyer.
Erlich Law Firm can evaluate your situation and advise you on the available legal options. You may have grounds to file a pregnancy discrimination claim to pursue compensation for lost wages, emotional distress, and other related costs. If your employer has discriminated against you based on your pregnancy, you do not have to tolerate their unlawful behavior. When you hire us, you will get skilled, compassionate legal representation.
Call for a Free Case Evaluation
If you were subjected to workplace discrimination or were wrongfully terminated based on your pregnancy, discuss your situation with an experienced Walnut Creek employment attorney at Erlich Law Firm. We can help you understand your workplace rights and hold your employer accountable for their unlawful conduct. Contact us today to get started.
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When employees' legal rights are violated, we take time to explain their legal options, listen to their goals, and aggressively argue their case until we achieve the resolution they deserve.