Is it discrimination ifI was offered a job but once they found out that I’m pregnant, Ihave heard nothing further from them?

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Is it discrimination ifI was offered a job but once they found out that I’m pregnant, Ihave heard nothing further from them?

I went for an interview and all went well. I was called a couple of days later and a voicemail was left saying that they would like to offer me the position. I was told that they needed 3 references.(I have the voicemail). I called her back and she told me the same thing. I then told her that I was expecting and asked is this going to be an issue? I was told no that I just needed to get the doctor to say that I could do the job. I called a few days later to check thestatus of my references and was sent an e-mail saying that if they needed anything else they would call. Now I found out that they did not check my references was was told they are still interviewing.

Asked on October 12, 2010 under Employment Labor Law, Alabama

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

It may be discrimination. With a very few exceptions (e.g. a job you couldn't safely hire a pregant woman for, such as one involving exposure to certain hazardous substances or extreme levels of physical exertion) where the employer can show the pregnancy precludes someone from starting in that job, employers may not refuse to hire someone because they are pregnant. However, they may refuse to hire someone for a fully nondiscriminatory reason even if that person is pregnant--e.g. references that did not check out; or the position being eliminated after it was posted due to downsizing. That is why I say it "may" be discrimination--from what you write, it could certainly be the case, but it's impossible to tell for sure yet. If you believe it was or may be discrimination and this job is important to you (for economic or emotional reasons), you should consult with an employment attorney who can evaluate the situation in detail with you.


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