Can I sue my former employer for pregnancy discrimination?

I worked for a property management company. I had a high risk pregnancy that caused me to have to stop working. After I was cleared to return to work, my job asked when I could return, when I gave them the date, they told me that my position had been filled and because I wasn’t working there over a year, they did not have to offer me another position. But she sent me an email stating that they would keep me in mind if something came up in my area, but when a job did, they never contacted me. I am currently a tenant in their apartment complex.

Asked on October 28, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, New York

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Unfortunately, from what you write, this  does *not* seem like you are suffering pregnancy discrimination.

1) First, from what you write, your employer did not make you stop working unfairly; you had a high-risk pregnancy and had to stop for medical reasons. That is not discrimination on the employerr's part.

2) You say you were gone for over a year. There is no law which requires an employer to hold someone's job for a year or more. Even the family and medical leave act (FMLA) only provides up to 12 weeks of leave. An employer has to be able to manage its business; it is not expected to hold positions indefinitely for  people who may or may not actually return (and in any event, they may have to hire people in the interim to do the work).


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