The Fair Employment and Housing Act is a California law that protects employees from discrimination or unfair treatment in the workplace. For example, under the FEHA, a pregnant woman cannot be terminated from her job simply because she is pregnant if she is still able to perform her duties. A recent employment law case just passed through an appellate court regarding this issue.
A woman who had worked for a non-profit organization filed a claim against her employer, citing a violation of the FEHA regarding pregnancy discrimination. She reportedly had given birth and then suffered complications afterward, which, she says, she verified with documentation provided to her employer. The woman claimed that the employer forced her out of her job through harassment and impeded her ability to obtain employment elsewhere.
Employer wins the case in both courts
The lower court that initially heard the woman’s claim ruled that she failed to prove that her employer had violated the FEHA or that the company had harassed her or discriminated against her because of pregnancy. The plaintiff filed an appeal, but the appellate court upheld the rulings of the lower court. In its ruling, the court ruled that accommodating the worker’s request for an adjusted schedule to avoid stress during pregnancy would have required her to be excused from her duties and replaced by another employee.
Employers can refute allegations of employment law violations
Many California employers worry that workers will always win employment law claims against them. In fact, many employers, such as the company mentioned in this post, walk away with a victory in court when a plaintiff fails to substantiate a claim. An employer who is concerned about pending litigation may schedule a consultation with an experienced attorney for guidance and support.