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Discussion Question

Hi - I recently left my job and became pregnant.

Hi - I recently left my job and became pregnant. I am 12 weeks pregnant and job hunting. Its possible that I will have a couple of job offers in the next month. At what point in the interview/offer process do I tell an employer that I'm pregnant? Are there companies that will hold my job during maternity leave even though I won't qualify for FMLA? I'm also concerned with affecting a new relationship with an employer by revealing that I will be going on leave in six months. Has anyone else experienced this? Looking for facts and words of encouragement!

Fairygodboss member Takingaleap

  • Fairygodboss member

    Hi there! I work in HR, and I would recommend sharing that news with your employer before accepting an offer. They can't legally retract an offer because you are pregnant, and technically you don't have to tell them anything at all but our of professional courtesy I would go ahead and let them know -
    and see what your options are. Just be honest and tell them if you plan to work up until your due date (or whatever your plan is). Most employers will work with you and at least offer unpaid leave and protection (if not paid leave) even if you won't qualify for FMLA. Sometimes employers can't offer your Short Term Disability if its through their insurance provider because there may be a waiting period that they have no control over. Other companies have true maternity leave policies so it just depends. Most companies won't want to fire a pregnant woman because 1. that's pretty morally wrong especially if you have been working for them for several months already and 2. that's risky legal territory! 3. Rehiring someone after they trained you and invested in you is a waste of resources for them.

    I'm not sure if this will apply to you but if you are out on leave when you hit the 12 month mark, you will be eligible for FMLA at that time - even if you have already taken a month or so off. If you are still employed, they legally have to give you FMLA at that time. Let's say you have been working there for 10 months when you go on leave. You are out on unpaid, non-FMLA leave of absence for 2 months to equal 12 months of employment - after the end of your 2nd month of leave, you could start FMLA since you would have met the requirements at that time (as long as you were full time before).

    Either way, most companies will work with you. Maybe offer to work from home if that's a possibility. And if they company won't work with you, maybe that's not the best company to work for. Good luck! I am sure you will find something great if you haven't already.

  • Fairygodboss member

    Thank you for sharing! If you don't mind me asking - how did the employer respond to the news that you would be taking maternity leave as a new employee?

  • Fairygodboss member

    I just did this and didn't mention I was pregnant until the offer came through and before I signed because I wanted to confirm maternity leave policy before accepting.
    Unfortunately, if you tell them before you get the offer letter, they might have bias in their decision to move forward to not.

    Good luck on the search!

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