Pregnancy Discrimination

Washington Post Covers Koller Law’s Recent Pregnancy Discrimination Settlement: The Washington Post covered one of Koller Law’s pregnancy discrimination cases. Read the May 26, 2023 news report.

Employment Lawyers - Pregnancy Discrimination at Work

Our Philadelphia employment law firm accepts pregnancy discrimination cases throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey.  Find out if you have legal rights for discrimination due to pregnancy, a pregnancy-related condition or parental leave. Contact our Philadelphia employment lawyers for a free, no obligation consultation.

Latest Pregnancy Discrimination News in Pennsylvania: An Erie, PA home healthcare company agreed to settle a pregnancy discrimination case after the EEOC alleged it fired an employee due to pregnancy. See Heartfelt Home Healthcare Services Settles Pregnancy Discrimination Lawsuit with EEOC (April 14, 2023).

Pregnancy Discrimination in Pennsylvania

In Pennsylvania, pregnancy discrimination remains a serious issue in employment law. Despite federal, state and even local laws that prohibit pregnancy discrimination, pregnancy discrimination is one of the most common reasons employees contact our Philadelphia employment law office.

Both federal and Pennsylvania laws prohibit employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of pregnancy and pregnancy related conditions and treatments such as miscarriage, abortion, etc.

However, it’s important to note that federal and Pennsylvania laws only apply to employers of certain sizes. The federal law discussed below applies to employers with at least 15 employees, and the state law applies to employers with at least 4 employees.

When a Pennsylvania employer engages in pregnancy discrimination, the employee may file a claim under either law. However, in most employment discrimination cases filed in Pennsylvania, the charge will be dual filed, meaning the employment agency (EEOC or PA HRC) where the charge was initially filed will automatically file the charge with the other agency. This protects the individual’s rights under both federal and state law.

Related Pregnancy Discrimination Case Result: $175,000 for a female executive who was terminated after notifying her employer, a large company in Philadelphia, of her pregnancy. See our employment law case results.

The Koller Law Firm is Challenging & Changing Laws for Mistreated Employees

Appeal Filed for Main Line Health Employee in Wrongful Termination Case

Despite winning a jury trial for one part of his client’s employment law claim against Main Line Health, firm founder Dave Koller was dissatisfied with the trial judge’s court ruling dismissing his client’s sexual harassment claim. He’s seeking to reinstate the claim and has filed an appeal. See Nitkin v. Main Line Health (Nov. 2021).

Ground Breaking 3rd Circuit Ct. of Appeals Precedential Decision – Client sexually harassed by supervisor

The Koller Law Firm obtained a huge victory for all victims of sexual harassment when the PA Third Circuit Court of Appeals agreed with arguments we were making that the law really needs to do a better job of taking into account the mindset of victims of sexual harassment in the workplace. See Minarsky v. Susquehanna County.

The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (Effective June 27, 2023)

The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA) was signed into law in 2022. As of June 27, 2023, the law requires covered employers to provide a reasonable accommodation to workers due to pregnancy, childbirth or a related medical condition, unless an accommodation will cause the employer an undue hardship.

Examples of reasonable accommodations under the PWFA include:

  • closer parking,
  • flexible hours,
  • appropriately sized uniforms or safety apparel,
  • additional break time to use the bathroom, eat, and rest,
  • exemption from activities that involve risks for pregnant or nursing workers.

Federal Law – The Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978 (PDA) & Pennsylvania Law – The Human Relations Act (HRA)

In addition to the newly Whether it’s under the PDA or the HRA, employers in Pennsylvania are prohibited from discriminating against both job applicants and employees due to pregnancy in any way, including:

  • failing to interview or hire,
  • firing, laying off or demoting,
  • changing job assignments,
  • reducing pay, hours or fringe benefits.

Pregnancy Discrimination at Work – Common Examples

Employer Lays Off Employee After Learning About Pregnancy

An employee in Philadelphia is terminated after reporting her pregnancy to HR, despite being a valued employee for several years, as indicated in her previous performance reviews. The employer states that it terminated the position due to restructuring. However, the investigation shows that the same position with substantially the same duties, requirements and schedule was offered to another employee shortly after the pregnant employee was terminated.

Employer Refuses to Allow Pregnant Employee to Return to Work

An employee in PA has a serious pregnancy related medical condition that requires a leave of absence for two weeks, which is approved by the employer. When she seeks to return to work after the two weeks, her employer tells her that it has hired someone else for her position. However, the employer’s own written policy states that all positions will be held open so long as the employer pre-approves the duration of the absence. In this case, the employee obtained approval for the two week leave of absence. Accordingly, the employee’s pregnancy discrimination claim would likely succeed.

Employer Refuses to Hire Pregnant Job Applicant

A visibly pregnant individual is interviewed for a job as a server at a Philadelphia restaurant, which is about to enter its busiest season of the year. During the interview, the employer and applicant discuss the due date, which is the middle of the busy season. The employer declines to hire the applicant and states that it cannot afford to hire a pregnant employee with a due date during its busy season. Here, the employer has clearly violated federal and state laws which prohibit making hiring decisions based on pregnancy.

Our Passion is Providing a Voice for Employees Who Experienced Pregnancy Discrimination at Work

At Koller Law our passion lies in representing people from all walks of life who have been wronged, who often feel hopeless, and are in search of a lawyer or professional who knows the law.

We have been handling employment discrimination cases throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey, just like yours, for many years. Koller Law is not run like every other firm – we provide the compassionate, individual attention employees need and deserve.

Call us at (215) 545-8917 or contact us to schedule a confidential case review today!

Last updated: December 22, 2023

Top Rated Employment Lawyer

For over 10 years, firm founder David Koller has been recognized as a “Top Rated Employment Litigation Attorney in Philadelphia” by Super Lawyers.

Koller Law - In the News

Koller Law’s employment cases and founder David Koller have been featured in national and local media. Learn more.

(March 14, 2021)
A Pa. mom says her boss forced her out of her job during the pandemic. She sued.

It’s close to impossible for many parents to work and also care for young children, said Philadelphia employment lawyer David Koller, who represents Delaney.

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act, effective March 2020, required employers to provide paid sick leave and paid leave to care for children whose schools had closed due to the pandemic. Employees who suffered demotions, lost pay, terminations or other negative consequences at work may be able to make a claim under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act.


Get help now from our highly rated employment lawyers.

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