Nassau County Pregnancy Discrimination
The total population of Nassau County in New York, as of 2012, was about 1.35 million people. Of these, 51.5% identified as female. Out of about 450,000 households, 35% had minor children living there. Many employers unfortunately have stereotypes about the effect of pregnancy and children on a woman's work performance. Pregnancy discrimination is a form of sex discrimination, and it can also be a form of familial status discrimination. At Phillips & Associates, our Nassau County pregnancy discrimination lawyers may be able to represent you in a lawsuit for damages.Federal Laws Governing Pregnancy Discrimination
Discriminating on the basis of pregnancy, labor, childbirth, or pregnancy-related medical conditions is illegal and a form of sex discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act. This federal law covers companies and other employers, as well as local and state governments, with a minimum of 15 employees.
Women who are pregnant or affected by pregnancy-related conditions are supposed to be treated by covered employers in the same way that job applicants or employees who have similar abilities and restrictions are. Employers cannot refuse to hire a woman due to her being pregnant, planning to be pregnant, or having a pregnancy-induced medical condition like pubic symphysis, or because of the stereotypes maintained by customers and other workers. For example, an investment bank should not decline to put you on a prestigious account that it would have otherwise given you based on merit, simply because you are a young woman who is trying to get pregnant, and the client harbors prejudices against pregnant women. Our pregnancy discrimination attorneys can help Nassau County employees hold employers accountable for violating these rules.
Under Title VII, employers also cannot subject a pregnant employee to special procedures in order to decide whether she is able to work. The exception is that if the employer has a general policy that requires you to submit a doctor's note about not being able to work before providing leave or paying sick benefits, the employer can ask you to do so when you are affected by a pregnancy or a pregnancy-related condition.
Similarly, if you are temporarily not able to do your job due to your pregnancy, you are supposed to be treated the same as other temporarily disabled employees, like those with pneumonia or a broken leg. Thus, for example, if an employer allowed your coworker to take a disability leave without pay when they suffered a crippling bout of rheumatoid arthritis, it would also need to allow you a disability leave without pay if you were disabled by a pregnancy-related condition.
As a pregnant worker whose employer is covered by Title VII, you are supposed to be able to work as long as you can do your job. If you are out of work because of a pregnancy-related condition, and you get better, your employer cannot require you to stay on leave until the baby's birth. Your employer also cannot have a rule that stops you from returning to work after childbirth. A Nassau County pregnancy discrimination attorney also can help you bring a claim against an employer if it fails to hold the job open for a pregnancy or labor-related leave for as long as it would hold that job open for an employee who was taking a disability or sick leave. Similarly, the health insurance that you get from your employer is supposed to pay for expenses associated with gestational diabetes or pre-eclampsia on the same basis as it pays for expenses for other medical problems.State Law
Treating pregnancy-related conditions differently from other medical conditions is illegal under the New York State Human Rights Law as well. This law applies to employers that have at least four employees. Under the Human Rights Law, employers are required to provide reasonable accommodations of pregnancy-related conditions and disabilities. Reasonable accommodations could include minor changes to the workplace or procedures such as allowing you to take more frequent water or restroom breaks, or they could include available light duty or temporary transfer away from hazardous duty when medically advised. If your employer denies you a reasonable accommodation of a pregnancy-related medical condition, this may be actionable sex or disability discrimination under state law.Consult a Pregnancy Discrimination Lawyer in Nassau County
At Phillips & Associates, our experienced Nassau County attorneys can evaluate your situation to determine whether you have a basis to sue for pregnancy discrimination and represent you if appropriate. Call us at (516) 365-3731 or contact us online. We can discuss your situation at a free appointment and do not require you to pay upfront fees if we take your case.
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Manhasset, NY 11030