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I Was Fired In New York Because I’m Pregnant. Can I Sue?

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Pregnancy discrimination can also be a form of gender discrimination and may be demonstrated in several different ways: Firing an employee after they become pregnant, during their pregnancy or shortly after they return to work is a common sign of discrimination. Even if your employer doesn’t fire you but makes it difficult for you to come back to work, reduces your hours or reduces your wages or compensation, that may also be considered discrimination. 

Likewise, your employer must make accommodations for your pregnancy including shorter shifts, longer breaks, time off for doctors’ appointments and a safe place for pumping if necessary. If they aren’t able to provide these things, they may be breaking the law. 

If this has happened to you, or if you’ve faced other unfair treatment during pregnancy, you may be able to sue your employer for discrimination. An attorney can help you determine whether you have a case under New York’s laws. 

Providing Evidence For Your Case

It’s important to be able to prove how you were discriminated against in a pregnancy discrimination case. You may need to prove that your boss treated you differently based on your pregnancy and that you were not given adequate opportunities. Evidence for your case can come in many forms; in some cases, the employer may even admit that your pregnancy played a part in their decision. If they haven’t, circumstantial evidence may be enough to convince the jury or a judge that you were the target of pregnancy discrimination. 

Relevant circumstantial evidence may include performance reports, emails describing behavior or certain decisions, suspicious timing and witness accounts of the situation. For example, if your employer claimed that they let you go because of poor performance but your coworkers can testify that you have a reputation for good work and your previous performance record was good, that may contribute to the evidence that you were let go because of your pregnancy. 

Federal laws protect pregnant employees from certain behaviors in the workplace, and you shouldn’t be afraid to pursue legal action if your employer has broken the law. If you were let go because of your pregnancy or faced other forms of discrimination, an attorney can help you determine if you have a case.

Disclaimer: The answer is intended to be for informational purposes only. It should not be relied on as legal advice, nor construed as a form of attorney-client relationship.

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