Pregnancy Discrimination and Wrongful Termination
Federal, state, and local laws protect the rights of pregnant women in the workplace. For example, it is illegal for an employer to fire a female employee solely because she is expecting a child. This practice does persist, however, and it is known as wrongful termination. The pregnancy discrimination lawyers of Phillips & Associates have significant experience helping New York workers who have been fired for being pregnant. If your employer has broken the law, you may be able to seek damages.Legal Protections for Pregnant Women in the Workplace
The federal Pregnancy Discrimination Act (PDA), an amendment to the Civil Rights Act of 1964, expanded the definition of gender discrimination to include pregnancy, childbirth, and related medical conditions. The New York Human Rights Law similarly prohibits a company from firing a woman because she is expecting a child. It also forbids employers to make female workers take a leave of absence during pregnancy, assuming they can perform the necessary tasks of their jobs. New York City law provides many of the same protections as the state and federal rules, but it goes a step further by requiring employers to provide pregnant women with reasonable accommodations that help them do their work more effectively.
If a woman is fired because she is pregnant, her employer likely has committed a type of gender discrimination called wrongful termination. This generally occurs in one of two ways. First, if a woman reveals to someone at work that she is pregnant and is fired as a result, the employer probably has broken the law. The second way is less obvious but no less illegal. This can happen when a woman tells her supervisor that she is pregnant, and her boss subsequently takes an adverse employment action against her, such as paying her less, reducing her hours, or forcing her to change jobs within the company.
If the employee gets no response after pointing out this illegal conduct, she might file a complaint with the EEOC. If the employer fires her because she took this action, she may be able to hold it liable not only for the discriminatory behavior but for unlawful retaliation.
There may be other circumstances in which a wrongful termination may occur, including a constructive discharge as a result of a hostile work environment. Ask an attorney for advice specific to the details of your situation if you believe you may be the victim of unlawful pregnancy discrimination.Contact a New York Lawyer to Hold Your Former Employer Accountable
If you were fired from your job while you were pregnant, your employer may have committed gender discrimination in violation of federal, state, and city laws. This may be true even if your supervisor offered some other explanation for your firing as a pretext. A gender discrimination attorney at Phillips & Associates can carefully try to uncover the real reason why you were fired and, if appropriate, file a claim on your behalf against a New York employer that violated your rights. To schedule a free and confidential consultation, call (212) 248-7431 or contact us through our website.