In a right to work state, can you terminate or non-renew someone if they are pregnant?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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In a right to work state, can you terminate or non-renew someone if they are pregnant?

I have no negative performance evaluations, no write ups, and no corrective action plans. I am currently 28 weeks pregnant, and my contract expired June 30th. My due date is July 3rd. My employer told me today that they are not eliminating my position, but I may not be asked to come back with no reasons mentioned. This would mean I would lose my health insurance right before my son is born, have to find a job shortly before or after the birth of my son, and I would not be able to take

maternity leave if someone would hire me anyway. Do I have any legal protections being pregnant and an employee in good standing?

Asked on April 6, 2017 under Employment Labor Law, Florida


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

Being an employee "in good standing" does not give you any protection in and of itself. But anti-employment discrimination law prevents an employer from terminating a woman because they are pregnant. (Since only women become pregnant, discriminating on the basis of pregnancy is considered anti-female discrimination.) This is where your lack of a disciplinary history helps you: the employer cannot point to any documented issues, which creates a presumption, or at least strong inference, that they would be letting  you go because you are pregnant or giving birth, and that is illegal.If any negative action is taken against you, contact the federl EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) to file a complaint.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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