New and Expectant Mothers in the Workplace: Granting Time Off, Return to Work Accommodations, and More

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Nearly half of the U.S. workforce is comprised of women, and out of that group, roughly 80 percent are or will become mothers. With these substantial numbers, it's probable that your organization will have a new or expectant mother in the workplace at some point. With the number of lawsuits filed by new moms on the rise over the past decade, it's crucial for you to know your obligations so you don't find yourself on the losing side of a discrimination lawsuit.

Consider these recent cases:

  • A national computer company paid $625,000 in damages to a woman who was subjected to increased scrutiny and hostility after returning from maternity leave despite her positive reviews and exceptional performance record.
  • A sales manager was awarded $1 million after alleging that her employer failed to promote her because she had kids.
  • A school psychologist with terrific performance reviews was denied tenure after becoming a mom.

So is your organization prepared to reasonably accommodate expectant and new mothers? If you're not sure, the results can be costly. From breastfeeding to schedule adjustments, you must be up-to-date on the latest regulations that affect your accommodation practices so you can keep your employees happy and your organization in compliance.