Reasonable Accommodations for Pregnancy in Miami
Miami Attorneys Advocating for Pregnant Workers
Pregnancy can often be accompanied by challenging medical issues, such as severe morning sickness or a need for bedrest. Some pregnant women may need to see an Ob/Gyn every week. Employers must consider the needs of their pregnant employees and should not discriminate against them because of a pregnancy. If you are seeking reasonable accommodations for pregnancy, or if you have been denied an accommodation, you should consult the Miami pregnancy discrimination lawyers at Phillips & Associates about your potential options.
Reasonable Accommodations for Pregnancy
Reasonable accommodations are any changes to the workplace that allow a qualified job applicant or employee with a disability to do their job. In some cases, reasonable accommodations may be available to a pregnant employee because of a pregnancy or a pregnancy-related disability.
Under the federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act, employers with at least 15 employees are not allowed to discriminate on the basis of pregnancy. In addition to not firing you because of your pregnancy and not permitting harassment against you based on your pregnancy, your employer may need to provide you with reasonable accommodations for pregnancy.
If your employer provides other temporarily disabled workers with reasonable accommodations, it will need to provide you with reasonable accommodations as well. For example, did your coworker get light duty when she was on crutches? If so, you may be entitled to light duty if you need it due to a pregnancy-related temporary disability. As another example, if your coworker could alter her schedule to attend weekly appointments with her oncologist when she was diagnosed with cancer, you may be entitled to alter your schedule to attend weekly appointments with your Ob/Gyn, should that become required.
One reasonable accommodation to which you may be entitled during pregnancy is leave. However, this leave is only available if you are an eligible employee of a covered employer under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). You will need to put your employer on notice of childbirth or another event that qualifies you for FMLA leave. If you are eligible, and work for an FMLA-qualified employer, you are entitled to an unpaid 12-week leave. Our attorneys can help you assert your FMLA rights.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) may also provide a basis for you to ask for reasonable accommodations due to a pregnancy-related disability. if you work for an employer with at least 15 employees. The ADA defines a disability as a physical or mental impairment that substantially restricts a major life activity. Pregnancy alone is not considered a disability under the ADA. However, the law covers pregnancy-related disabilities like gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, or if you have been diagnosed with a high-risk pregnancy.
The Florida Civil Rights Act
Although the Florida Civil Rights Act bars pregnancy discrimination, and it also covers workplaces with at least 15 employees, it does not require you to be given reasonable accommodations for pregnancy beyond what federal laws require. The statute itself does not mention “pregnancy” but protects pregnancy under sex/gender. The state law does not specifically accommodate pregnancy or pregnancy-related conditions.
The Miami-Dade County Human Rights Ordinance
The Miami-Dade County Human Rights Ordinance requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to disabled employees if they have at least five employees. The purpose is to permit an employee to do her assigned work. For example, if you develop a pregnancy-related disability that requires you to take more frequent restroom breaks, a reasonable accommodation might be to allow you a more flexible schedule.
There are two municipal ordinances that allow for unpaid leave. Employers with at least 50 employees who are working in Miami-Dade County are supposed to give up to 30 days of unpaid domestic leave to eligible employees. However, pregnancy is not one of the grounds under which you can take domestic leave.
Retain a Knowledgeable Pregnancy Discrimination Attorney in Miami
Pregnancy may be worry-free, but in some cases, it presents certain obstacles to getting work done. If you believe that you were inappropriately denied reasonable accommodations for pregnancy, you should call the Miami attorneys at Phillips & Associates at (866) 229-9441 or complete our online form. We represent clients on a contingency fee basis, so we will not take attorneys’ fees unless we successfully secure a settlement or verdict on your behalf.
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