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Maternity Leave Laws

Need a sample maternity leave policy? Information on pregnancy disability leave? We can help with the latest on topics like disability maternity leave.

Creating a legally compliant maternity leave policy is harder than ever. When you need assistance, trust Business Management Daily to help you deliver.

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Placing an employee on forced leave can form the basis for a lawsuit, according to a recent 7th Circuit Court of Appeals decision. That’s true even if the forced leave is consistent with company policy and applies to all employees.
Generally, pregnancy isn’t a disability under the ADA, nor are pregnancy-related complications. But under some limited circumstances—when pregnancy complications cause separate medical conditions that persist after birth—the employee may qualify as disabled under the ADA.
There is no freedom from discrimination based on having premarital sex, but there is a right to be free of pregnancy discrimination. It may seem odd, but employers can technically fire someone for behavior that doesn’t meet the employer’s “moral” standards as long as no other protected characteristic is involved.
Maternity leave becomes an issue under the legal proscriptions of both the Pregnancy Discrimination Act and the Family and Medical Leave Act. The PDA requires employers to treat employees desiring maternity leave in the same way as they treat those workers out on short-term disability. And the FMLA has a boatload of demands employers must adhere to when it comes to leave for maternity and childbirth.
When discrimination based on pregnancy plays a part in a demotion or termination, the employee has a case under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act. Paternalistic beliefs that pregnant women need protection should not be part of the reason for any action, even if well-intentioned.
Warren Tricomi Salons, with locations on New York’s Upper East Side, will pay $30,000 to settle a pregnancy discrimination suit filed by the EEOC on behalf of an assistant who claims the company re­­scinded an offer to promote her and then fired her after her boss learned she was pregnant.
Here’s a tip if you use performance improvement plans (PIP) before termination. Track what happens to everyone who’s on a PIP. Note those who quit instead of facing discharge.
If you provide additional leave or special arrangements for someone recovering from a heart attack or broken leg, you must provide them for a pregnant employee, too. Otherwise, you may be violating the Pregnancy Discrimination Act.

Because absenteeism typically comes under the "minor problem" category, the first step is a precounseling session between the individual and his supervisor. In this session the supervisor determines if the employee understands the company's policy on absences. The positive discipline approach then consists of the following stages:

In tough times like these, employees are being asked to do more with less. Temporarily losing a worker to pregnancy, childbirth and maternity leave can create scheduling havoc. That doesn’t mean, however, that supervisors can let their irritation show.

Sometimes in HR, you know more than you want to know. But as this new court ruling shows, sharing in­­side information with an employee isn’t a smart move … for your em­­ployer or your career.

Businesses must stay abreast of an alphabet soup of federal laws—ADA, ADEA, FMLA and so forth—each with its own requirements. Further complicating matters, most states have their own laws that override the federal requirements. To comply, you first must know which laws apply to your business, based on the number of people you employ ...

Regular attendance is obviously a key job function for most of your employees. But despite your freedom to set and enforce attendance rules, you also face key legal hurdles to your attendance policy, including complying with the FMLA and ADA. Manage absenteeism by establishing a reasonable and specific attendance policy that incorporates your organization’s needs and the functional requirements of various work areas and employee functions. A sound attendance policy should cover all of the following:
Workers at two Texas health care companies are suing, alleging in separate lawsuits that their employers discriminated against them because of health-related issues. One suit claims pregnancy discrimination and FMLA interference, while the other says a worker was fired just before she was scheduled to undergo a costly surgical procedure.
Capri Healthcare in Clearwater is being sued following an EEOC complaint that it rescinded a job offer as soon as it found out its new employee was pregnant.

Just the facts, ma'am. Your employee handbooks should clearly state your organization's rules and benefits without including any excess or superfluous language. If you embellish the document with needless explanations, you may end up eating your words ...

“I’m pregnant!” … Two words that can make an employer cringe on the inside but smile on the outside. And even though the baby might not be kicking yet, you can be assured that pregnancy anti-discrimination laws have kicked in …
A restaurant manager apparently thought he was looking out for the best interests of pregnant employees and their fetuses when he told them to stop working in their last trimester. Not so fast, said the EEOC.
Are pregnant employees who develop complications disabled and entitled to reasonable accommodations under the ADA? A federal appeals court considered the question for the first time in Serednyj v. Beverly Healthcare LLC.
Employees don’t go from good to terrible instantly. There is usually a slow and steady decline. Be sure that the process is carefully documented, right from the very first verbal warning.
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