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New Jersey Pregnancy Discrimination Lawyers

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Despite being against the law, pregnancy discrimination is unfortunately relatively common in the workplace. Pregnancy discrimination includes unfair or unequal treatment based on current, past, or even potential pregnancy and can take many forms. Refusing to hire or promote an individual because of their pregnancy, refusing established company benefits such as health insurance, rejecting a leave request, and even firing someone for pregnancy all count as forms of pregnancy discrimination.

Navigating pregnancy discrimination claims can be a complex and often confusing process. The highly skilled New Jersey pregnancy discrimination lawyers at Joseph & Norinsberg are ready to help you every step of the way. We have a proven track record of securing favorable outcomes for our clients, including job reinstatement, back pay, and compensation for emotional distress.

Why Choose Joseph & Norinsberg for Your New Jersey Pregnancy Discrimination Case?

If your employer has discriminated against you because of pregnancy, trust Joseph & Norinsberg to provide the relentless and empathetic representation you deserve. Our employment law firm fiercely protects pregnant workers’ rights in New Jersey.

With over 75 years of combined legal experience, our staff of experienced attorneys and paralegals is ready to support you during your case, inside and outside the courtroom.

We fight to protect the right to fair pay, equal treatment, and a safe, welcoming work environment free from unfair discrimination. We pride ourselves on taking on even the most challenging, using hard work and thorough preparation to obtain justice for our clients. Our cases often receive substantial media coverage. For instance, Senior Partners Bennitta Joseph and Jon L. Norinsberg recently filed a ­­­­­­­­$15 million dollar lawsuit on behalf of six former employees of the Mohawk House fine-dining restaurant. These employees experienced sexual abuse, harassment, discrimination, and retaliation at the hands of their employer.

Additionally, our New Jersey attorneys have been widely recognized for their representation and skills. For example, the Supreme Court of New Jersey has designated senior trial attorney Crystal Dozier as a Certified Trial Attorney.

Our Clients Have Given Us a Five-Star Rating

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We are proud of our five-star Google rating, not because of the number but because of the satisfied clients it represents. We treat all our clients like family, and they regularly stay in touch with us long after their cases are resolved. We regularly receive unsolicited client testimonials such as the following:

Our Discrimination Case Results

Our proven track record of fighting for workers’ rights speaks for itself. Here is a recent example of a notable outcome we achieved:

  • After filing a complaint for two employees whose employer failed to pay them overtime and then terminated them for discriminatory and retaliatory reasons, we pushed the defendant to mediation and successfully obtained a settlement for their unpaid wages and emotional distress damages.

Pregnancy Discrimination Laws in New Jersey

Pregnancy discrimination involves unfavorable treatment on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, or a related medical condition. Examples of discriminatory conduct by an employer include refusing to hire or promote someone due to pregnancy, denying leave to pregnant workers that it would otherwise grant to non-pregnant employees, and even firing someone based on pregnancy.

Several laws in the United States prevent pregnancy discrimination and allow for reasonable accommodations. These reasonable accommodations are adjustments to job responsibilities or work environments that make it easier for pregnant individuals to access the workplace. Reasonable accommodations may include a space to breastfeed or increased water/rest breaks.

State and federal law protect New Jersey workers from pregnancy discrimination. Title VII of the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, specifically protects workers from pregnancy discrimination based on current, past, or potential pregnancy. The act additionally protects individuals from breastfeeding discrimination in the workplace. The federal Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, or PWFA, was enacted in 2023 and requires employers to make “reasonable accommodations” for pregnant and postpartum individuals.

In the Garden State, the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination, or NJLAD, protects workers from pregnancy discrimination in hiring, promotion, pay, or benefits. It additionally mandates that employers accommodate pregnant individuals’ needs for breaks, modified work schedules, assistance with manual labor, and a clean, private space for breastfeeding and lactation.

Furthermore, the federal Family Medical Leave Act, or FMLA, and the Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA, offer additional protections to most pregnant workers. The FMLA requires employers with at least 50 employees to provide 12 weeks of leave to pregnant employees who cannot work because of pregnancy-related complications. The ADA requires employers with at least 15 employees to provide reasonable accommodations to workers suffering from pregnancy-related disabilities. These accommodations can include everything from lighter-duty tasks to an additional leave of absence.

Common Forms of Pregnancy Discrimination

Pregnancy discrimination can take many forms, including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Refusal to hire someone based on pregnancy or perceived potential pregnancy
  • Demotion
  • Termination due to pregnancy
  • Harassment based on pregnancy
  • Denial of reasonable accommodations such as modified work duties, increased breaks, or leaves of absence
  • Retaliation against employees for asserting their rights, asking for accommodations, or filing complaints

It is important to note that pregnancy discrimination can happen to pregnant individuals, postpartum people seeking accommodations, and those who are not pregnant but are perceived to have the potential to become pregnant. Even if you are not pregnant, if you believe pregnancy discrimination occurred in your workplace, you may have legal options available to you.

Legal Rights and Remedies for Pregnant Individuals in New Jersey

Under state and federal law, pregnant employees in New Jersey have several rights in the workplace, including the right to equal treatment, reasonable accommodation, and freedom from retaliation. When employers violate these rights, victims have legal options to get the justice they deserve.

When pregnancy discrimination occurs, victims have the option to file complaints with both state and federal agencies. At the state level, the New Jersey Division on Civil Rights receives and investigates reports of discrimination. At the Federal level, pregnancy discrimination complaints can be filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

If a state or federal agency investigates your pregnancy discrimination claim and determines your civil rights were violated, they may order your employer to provide certain remedies, such as the following:

  • Compensation for lost wages
  • Damages for emotional pain and suffering
  • Job reinstatement
  • Attorneys’ fees
  • Punitive damages, like fees

You may also be eligible to file a civil lawsuit against your employer to pursue the compensation you deserve.

An experienced pregnancy discrimination attorney at Joseph & Norinsberg can analyze your case and determine the best course of action. We will listen. We will investigate. And if you have a case, we will fight relentlessly on your behalf to get you justice.

Steps To Take When Facing Pregnancy Discrimination in New Jersey

If you are facing pregnancy discrimination in New Jersey, document all instances you encounter, including dates, times, and potential witnesses.

Additionally, if you ask your employer for accommodations, such as increased breaks or modification of job responsibilities, do so in writing to establish a paper trail. Keep records of communications with your employer wherever possible to provide evidence if you later file a complaint.

Once pregnancy discrimination occurs in the workplace, you need a skilled employment attorney on your side to assist you with navigating the process of filing a complaint and getting the compensation you deserve. Joseph & Norinsberg are tenacious, empathetic New Jersey pregnancy discrimination attorneys. We will be firmly on your side, acting as a resource to help you understand your rights and legal options.

Preventative Measures for Employers

Pregnancy discrimination is a pervasive problem. Employers are legally responsible for ensuring their workplace accommodates all employees and provides an environment free from discrimination. Some ideas for preventative measures employers can take to avoid pregnancy discrimination include the following:

  • Institute training for managers and employees on pregnancy discrimination and legal obligations to pregnant individuals.
  • Create structured procedures for receiving and handling accommodation requests.
  • Create a supportive work environment that values diversity and inclusion.
  • Implement a system for handling complaints of workplace discrimination.
  • Investigate discrimination complaints thoroughly and take remedial action when warranted.

Contact a New Jersey Pregnancy Discrimination Attorney at Joseph & Norinsberg

Despite federal and state-level regulations to prevent workplace pregnancy discrimination, unfair treatment of pregnant individuals still occurs. For many victims of discrimination, navigating the process of filing a complaint and pursuing legal remedies can be overwhelming. An experienced New Jersey pregnancy discrimination lawyer can be a valuable resource to those experiencing discrimination.

Joseph & Norinsberg is here to help. We can evaluate your case, explain your options, and build the strongest case possible to get the justice you deserve. Contact us today via our online form or at 212-227-5700 to schedule a free case consultation.

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CLIENT TESTIMONIALS
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Sexual harassment case against a luxury brand in the fashion industry (confidential).

$750,000

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Sexual harassment case settled against a large bio-tech company.

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