Can an employer threaten to let an employee go because their wife is pregnant?

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Can an employer threaten to let an employee go because their wife is pregnant?

I’m a temp to hire employee for a company. I talked to them about time off because my wife is pregnant. I was told by the head manager that if they had known my wife was pregnant they would not have hired me. The manager also said this would effect me being hire on permanently and that they may have to let me go because of this. I was just wondering if the company broke any laws by threatening to let me go because my wife is pregnant also I was wondering if FMLA protects me? I did inform the HR and 2 managers that my wife was pregnant during my interviews.

Asked on April 1, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Minnesota

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Your employer can threaten to fire you because your wife is pregnant. However, such a threat under state laws of all states in this country is illegal in that you are being discriminated upon based upon your marital status. Under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), if your employer has more than 50 employees and you qualify for leave under its provisions, you are entitled to leave from post the arrival of your new child.

I suggest that you consult further with a labor law attorney and/or a representative with your local department of labor regarding the threats against you by your employer.


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