When job searching, it is not uncommon for a pregnant woman to question whether she will be considered a viable candidate by the employer because of her pregnancy status. Although illegal in California, pregnancy discrimination happens every day, and those seeking a job may experience it during the application and interview stages. However, there are legal implications of discriminating against a pregnant woman when hiring.
It is Illegal to Consider Pregnancy Status in the Hiring Process.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is a government organization that was established to protect workers from discrimination in the workplace. According to the EEOC, it is illegal for an employer to refuse to hire a qualified applicant because she is pregnant. This protection extends to all stages of the hiring process, including job advertisements, interviews, and reference checks.
If an employer asks questions about your pregnancy during an interview or on a job application, this could be considered evidence of pregnancy discrimination. For example, if you are asked whether you are planning on having more children or when you plan to take maternity leave, this could indicate that the employer is considering your pregnancy when making hiring decisions.
How You Can Hold an Employer Accountable
If you believe that you were not hired because of your pregnancy status, there are a few steps you can take. First, try to get in touch with the hiring manager or human resources department to ask why you were not selected for the position. If they mention your pregnancy status or say something alluding to pregnancy as a factor in their decision, this could be evidence of discrimination.
You can also file a charge with the EEOC. The EEOC will investigate your claim and determine whether there is enough evidence to pursue legal action against the employer. If choosing to pursue a lawsuit, hiring an experienced employment attorney can help you through the process.
The pregnancy discrimination lawyers at Yadegar, Minoofar & Soleymani LLP have over 85 years of combined experience helping clients seek justice. Schedule a free evaluation with our team today by calling (310) 499-0140.