Palm Beach Gardens Pregnancy Discrimination Attorney
Pregnancy is often a stressful time for expecting parents. On top of preparing for the arrival of a new child, many pregnant women must also unfortunately deal with issues at their job. Many Florida employers are, to put it bluntly, hostile towards pregnancy and see it as an inconvenience to their “bottom line.”
But the law is clear: A Florida employer may not discriminate against an employee or job applicant based on their pregnancy status. If you have dealt with an employer who fails to follow this simple rule, then you have the right to take legal action and seek monetary damages as compensation. The Palm Beach pregnancy discrimination attorneys at the Sconzo Law Office, P.A., can assist you in building and presenting your case.
What Is Considered “Pregnancy Discrimination” in Florida?
The federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Florida state law both prohibit discrimination in employment on the basis of sex. Sex discrimination also includes various forms of pregnancy discrimination. This means an employer cannot fire, refuse to hire, or engage in unequal treatment of an employee based on any of the following:
- a current pregnancy;
- a past pregnancy;
- a potential pregnancy;
- using birth control or other forms of contraception
- deciding to have an abortion; or
- any medical condition related to a pregnancy or childbirth, including breastfeeding.
It is also against the law for any employer, or anyone working for that employer, to harass an employee based on their pregnancy, childbirth, or medical condition related to a pregnancy. For example, making unwelcome jokes, insults, or threats about an employee’s pregnancy may constitute harassment depending on the circumstances.
And while Florida law does not require employers to offer pregnancy leave to any employee, federal law mandates that an employer covered by the Civil Rights Act–basically any company with 15 or more workers–must provide the same leave benefits to pregnant women as any other employee with a temporary disability. Additionally, if a pregnant employee is covered by the Family and Medical Leave Act, they may take up to 12 weeks of job-protected leave each year for prenatal and pregnancy-related medical care.
Contact the Sconzo Law Office Today
Pregnancy discrimination is often more subtle than you might think. An employer may ask new female hires if they are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. That might sound innocent enough, but it is often a precursor to discrimination, which is why such questions are actually illegal in job interviews.
Pregnancy is a natural part of life. And while some employers view a pregnant employee as an inconvenience, that is not a legal defense to discriminatory conduct. If you have faced such discrimination, it is critical that you act promptly to secure your legal rights. By law, you typically have a year or less to file a formal discrimination complaint with the state or federal government, which is the first step towards taking legal action against an employer.
So do not delay. If you need to speak with a Palm Beach Gardens pregnancy discrimination attorney, contact the Sconzo Law Office, P.A., today to schedule a complimentary consultation.