M.V. asks from Grayslake, IL on December 15, 2008
I Just Found Out Im Pregnant
I kind of have something bugging me. I just found out that I am pregnant, and one of my co-workers said that our boss was mean to her and kind of discriminated against her the hole time she was pregnant. I took off 3 months with my son and my co-worker said that she only gave her 6 weeks, because legally that is what she gives. I want 3 months i think 6 weeks is a little young to bring an infant to daycare. So how do I go about telling my boss with out getting the cold shoulder and being treated mean. please give me suggestions.
M.K. answers from Chicago on December 16, 2008
What Courtney (and some others) said in the very first post is true. No company in the US is REQUIRED to offer employees maternity leave at all. The custom of "6 weeks for a regular birth and 8 for a c-section" is a common benefit that many companies (especially publicly-traded Fortune 500 companies) tend to offer.
The only Federally protected benefit you may have, depending upon the size of the company you are with and other factors, is the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA). If your company must abide by FMLA, you are entitled to 12 weeks, unpaid leave. They do NOT have to give you back your current position -- they can put you in a "comparable" at the same pay rate.
If you have an anonymous HR line, call and ask about your company's policies on maternity leave. Be aware that HR function is to support and protect upper management...so if you are not having an anonymous or protected conversation, you can never be certain of what will be reported back to your Manager.
Most likely, you'll probably need to work with your Manager to put together a leave plan that includes (1) any maternity leave they offer, plus (2) use of any paid vacation or time off you have accrued, and then (3) FMLA time. Unfortunately, you cannot control her reaction and attitude about losing an employee for an extended period of time. I hope she is not mean to you...but please document ALL conversations with her immediately after having them, to keep on file. Maintain your professionalism and your positive attitude, no matter how she treats you. If you feel mistreated or discrimination, you will need this documentation. Personally, I would follow-up every single meeting about the topic of your pregnancy with an email outlining the instructions or feedback she has given you.
Finally...CONGRATULATIONS ON YOUR WONDERFUL NEWS!!!!! May you be blessed with a healthy, easy pregnancy!!
1 mom found this helpful
C.P. answers from Chicago on December 16, 2008
Normal time off is 6 weeks for reg birth and 9 weeks for c section. I remember that was short term disability. There is the FMLA leave that you can take along with it, but it doesnt save your position. They have to gaurentee you a job after the 12 weeks, but not your position is gauranteed.
Yuor boss should not treat differently becasue you are pregnant. Its a happy time dont let her bring you down.
There a laws.
S.B. answers from Chicago on December 16, 2008
Hi M.! Congratulations on your pregnancy! I know you are worried about this! Is this coworker someone you can completely trust? What kind of relationship did she have with the boss before she got pregnant? How long have you been working there? These are all things to think of! I would just ask for a meeting with your boss and say to him/her that you just found out you are pregnant and what you would like to do! And you can even explain the benefits of this to your boss too if you wish! It would be better for you and for the baby for you to be home longer then 6 weeks for sure! I hope this helps some!
S. Bailey CLD
S.M. answers from Chicago on December 16, 2008
Your boss cannot legally treat you differently. Illinois law dictates that you are ENTITLED to 12 weeks FMLA leave. Talk to your HR person First. Being pregnant is a protected status and you cannot be discriminated against. Good luck!
M.R. answers from Chicago on December 15, 2008
To my knowledge, typically FMLA allows for up to 12 weeks leave of absence after the birth of a child. That does not mean they have to pay you for those 12 weeks, though. Like others have said, it all depends on the size of the workforce and how long you have been employed.
At the very least, you should be able to get six weeks. Most ob/gyns will state the recovery time from a vaginal delivery is 6 weeks and for a c-section, 9 weeks. Therefore, the FMLA is covering *your* health issues and the time you need to recover from your medical issue, not necessarily the 'taking care of a child'.
C.G. answers from Augusta on December 15, 2008
Depending on where you work and how long you have worked there you may be entitled to FMLA- check with your HR department. Also, the law does not require that you are given any maternity leave- sad but true! So definitely check with HR to see what they offer before you talk to your boss.
Z. answers from Chicago on December 15, 2008
check out the fmla guidelines. You should get up to 12 wks, but it hinders on how long you have been with the company and, I believe, the amt of employees that work there.
D.N. answers from Chicago on December 16, 2008
I agree with the other posts about finding you company policy and legal requirements pertaining to FMLA. But I do not think it is necessary to tell your boss immediately if you just found out you are pregnant. Actually waiting until you are 3 or 4 months is plenty of time to work with your boss to figure out time and work shifting. And I totally agree with keeping a log of conversations you have, whether with HR or with your boss. Also keep notes of "attitude" changes.