Pregnancy at Work

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Maternity Leave Laws

Maternity leave is the time you take off from work before or after having a baby. Most women are entitled to a total of approximately seven months of “job-protected” leave. This means you cannot be fired during leave or because of your leave.

Your Right to Disability & Baby Bonding Leave

As of January 1, 2021, most California employers with more than five employees must provide leave under both the PDL and CFRA. Altogether, most women in California are entitled to up to seven months of leave when they give birth. This is made up of several different types of leave.

  • Pregnancy Disability Leave: You are entitled to up to four months of partially paid leave under the State PDL program. You are entitled to PDL even if you work part-time.
  • CFRA Leave: You also are entitled to an additional 12 weeks of job-protected leave under CFRA if you have worked for at least 1,250 hours in the past year.
  • Additional Leave as a Reasonable Accommodation: If you are suffering from a pregnancy-related medical condition—for instance, post-partum depression or anxiety—that requires additional unpaid leave, your employer is required to engage in the good faith interactive process to attempt to accommodate you.
  • Your Health Insurance While on Leave: Under both the PDLL and CFRA/FMLA, your employer must continue to cover their regular portion of your health insurance premiums while you are on leave, whether your leave is paid or unpaid.

Any violation of these laws can lead to a pregnancy discrimination claim. Talk to an attorney if you feel that your rights have been violated.

If you would like to learn more about maternity leave and other information about your rights during your pregnancy, download our Free eBook.

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