Navigate Up

Pregnancy Center - A-Z Index


Print This Page

Maternity Leave And Work Issues

Maternity Leave And Work Issues

If you are planning to become pregnant, you need information about the policies in your workplace. For instance, it is your employer's responsibility to inform you of any workplace reproductive hazards. Potential hazards include lead, ethylene oxide, ionizing radiation, and dibromochloropropane. Your policy manual should state your employer's policies regarding maternity leave and vacation time.

Your health care provider or midwife can inform you if you have special considerations for your pregnancy that will require extra visits, extra rest, or any work restrictions. Many women fear workplace discrimination regarding pregnancy, such as taking time for childcare and breastfeeding, but it is illegal for most employers to discriminate on these bases. If you develop problems during your pregnancy, your employer is required to treat your pregnancy like any other medical disability. This is part of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act.

Under the Family Medical Leave Act, employees are eligible for unpaid leave for illness or pregnancy and birth, and their group health benefits maintained if they:

  • Have worked for their employer at least 12 months
  • Have worked at least 1,250 hours over the past 12 months
  • Work at a location where the company employs 50 or more people within 75 miles of that location

Eligibility is determined under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Make sure you get the appropriate paperwork from your employer, and bring it to your health care provider.

Updated: 12/9/2012

Irina Burd, MD, PhD, Maternal Fetal Medicine, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD. Review provided by VeriMed Healthcare Network.

©  UPMC | Affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
Supplemental content provided by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions. All rights reserved.

For help in finding a doctor or health service that suits your needs, call the UPMC Referral Service at 412-647-UPMC (8762) or 1-800-533-UPMC (8762). Select option 1.

UPMC is an equal opportunity employer. UPMC policy prohibits discrimination or harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, age, sex, genetics, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, familial status, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected group status. Further, UPMC will continue to support and promote equal employment opportunity, human dignity, and racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity. This policy applies to admissions, employment, and access to and treatment in UPMC programs and activities. This commitment is made by UPMC in accordance with federal, state, and/or local laws and regulations.

Medical information made available on is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely entirely on this information for your health care needs. Ask your own doctor or health care provider any specific medical questions that you have. Further, is not a tool to be used in the case of an emergency. If an emergency arises, you should seek appropriate emergency medical services.

For UPMC Mercy Patients: As a Catholic hospital, UPMC Mercy abides by the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services, as determined by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. As such, UPMC Mercy neither endorses nor provides medical practices and/or procedures that contradict the moral teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.

Pittsburgh, PA, USA