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Job Hunting while Pregnant? Tips to Help During the Interview Process

Posted on in Employment

CA employment lawyerLooking for a new job can be challenging in any circumstances. This is particularly true if you are pregnant. Going to an interview while expecting or with an obvious baby bump can be awkward, but it is important to realize your rights under state employment laws. Employers are prohibited against discrimination against pregnant women, but determining whether you were not hired on this basis can prove challenging. The following outlines your rights in these matters and tips to guide you through the process.

CA Law Prohibiting Pregnancy Discrimination

Discriminatory practices based on pregnancy are prohibited under both state and federal laws. According to the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), employers are prohibited from denying you a job that you are otherwise qualified for and able to perform, simply on the basis of your pregnancy.

Once you are on the job, there are varying requirements for maternity leave based on the size of the company you work for:

  • Employers with more than 50 employees must provide job protected leave.
  • Provided they have at least five other employees, the employer must also provide up to four months disability leave during your pregnancy or after the birth of your child.

Unfortunately, these obligations and the associated costs or perceived inconvenience could end up making it more difficult for you to actually get hired. Displaying this attitude is illegal, but also common enough that you need to be prepared.

Dealing with Your Pregnancy in Interviews

By law, employers are not permitted to ask you about your pregnancy in an interview or whether you have plans for additional children in the future. They are also prohibited from making hiring decisions based on their attitudes about pregnancy, childbirth, child raising, or the role mothers play within the home.

However, while you are not required to disclose your pregnancy, not doing so can be awkward, particularly if you are showing. The following includes tips to follow:

  • Acknowledge that you are expecting during the negotiation process or while you are discussing your long term goals with the company.
  • If there are physical aspects of your job that you may be unable to perform, your future employer has a right to know. Emphasize that it is a temporary situation that is not likely to impact your future abilities.
  • Avoid lengthy discussions about your pregnancy or your plans afterward. While you want to provide some reassurance about your commitment to the company if hired, gently steer the topic back to the job and your qualifications.
  • Be alert for comments that could indicate bias against pregnant women and working mothers during the interview. Write down any incidents that seem troubling for use as future evidence, if needed.

Let Us Help You Today

If you suspect you have been discriminated against on the basis of your pregnancy, our passionate San Jose employment law attorneys are here to help. Reach out and contact the Jachimowicz Law Group by calling 408-246-5500 and request a consultation to discuss your case today.









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