Doctors sometimes tell pregnant employees they can’t lift anything in excess of a certain weight. If the job requires such lifting, there is nothing to prevent the employer from placing the pregnant worker on.
Recent case: Tracy Arnold’s job required her to occasionally lift, carry or push more than 50 pounds. Because she was experiencing a high-risk pregnancy, her doctor said she couldn’t lift more than just a few pounds. Her employer placed her onleave since she couldn’t perform her job.
Arnold ran out of FMLA leave and she was terminated. She sued, alleging she should not have been placed on leave.
But she didn’t offer any evidence that the job’s weight requirement wasn’t real. Her employer was entitled to place her on leave. (Arnold v. North Okaloosa Medical Center, No. 3:09-CV-572, ND FL, 2010)
- How to Fire an Employee the Legal Way: 6 Termination Guidelines
- You don't have to chase down FMLA certification
- Don't let FMLA status keep you from firing lousy employee
- Make sure employee handbook supports compliance with leave laws
- Think carefully about how work restrictions will play out following FMLA leave