How to Request Pregnancy Accommodations at Work
If you work at an employer with more than five employees, you have the right to reasonable accommodations because of your pregnancy. Reasonable accommodations can include temporary transfer to a less strenuous or hazardous position, “light duty,” breaks to sit down, a stool, modified equipment or uniforms, etc.
- Do it in writing: Regardless of how you choose to initially request accommodations, you should always reiterate your request in writing.
- Including the keywords: There are no magic words, but you should mention “pregnancy” and “accommodation(s)” to be safe.
- Specify accommodations: In your correspondence, be specific about what accommodations you need. Are you asking for a modified work schedule? Approximately 10 minutes of additional break time every two hours? Time to attend doctor’s appointments? A place to sit down when your feet swell?
Your employer cannot require you to share the diagnosis or specific condition that requires the accommodation.
Getting Time Off for Doctor’s Appointments
When possible, you should provide your employer notice as soon as your appointments are scheduled. You generally have a right to the accommodation of limited time off to attend your regular prenatal appointments. You may use PDL for this time.
You cannot be required to find a replacement worker as a prerequisite to taking time off for doctor’s appointments.
Find out more about pregnancy accommodations and other tips on how to manage your pregnancy in the workplace in our Free eBook.