Discrimination against you due to you being pregnant can happen anywhere in the workplace, looking for work, or during a recruitment process, meaning you could be entitled to compensation under a maternity and pregnancy discrimination claim.
If you believe you have been a victim of discrimination in the workplace contact Powell Eddison maternity and pregnancy discrimination lawyers today for a free initial consultation on making a discrimination claim.
Contact our discrimination lawyers by calling our Harrogate law firm on 01423 564551 or our Leeds law firm on 0113 200 7480. We are ready to speak to you confidentially about any potential claims.
What is maternity & pregnancy discrimination?
Under the Equality Act 2010, it is unlawful for an employer to discriminate against employees because of them being pregnant.
As defined in pregnancy and maternity discrimination, it is unlawful to discriminate against you because:
you’re pregnant, or
of a pregnancy-related illness
A person could take their maternity and pregnancy discrimination case to an employment tribunal if they believe they've been discriminated against because of pregnancy or maternity, through one of the following ways:
not offering them a job
changing their pay or other terms
forcing them to work while on maternity leave
stopping them returning to work because they're breastfeeding.
Examples of maternity and pregnancy discrimination
There are two main types of pregnancy and maternity discrimination - unfavourable treatment and victimisation.
Employees are protected against unfavourable treatment because of pregnancy or maternity. This means an employee or job applicant must not be disadvantaged because of their pregnancy or maternity. For example, they must not:
be subjected to unfair treatment because of pregnancy or maternity
suffer disadvantage because of pregnancy or maternity through the employer's policies, procedures, rules or practices
suffer unwanted behaviour because of pregnancy or maternity.
Victimisation can be claimed when an employee is treated unfairly because they’ve made a complaint about discrimination due to being pregnant, or they’re supporting a colleague who has a complaint against a company.
Do you think you have been discriminated against because of your pregnancy? If you have had your employment terminated, and think that this is because of your pregnancy, then, in addition to a discrimination claim you could also make a case for unfair dismissal.
Pregnancy and maternity discrimination is broken down into the above 2 examples (discrimination for unfavourable treatment and victimisation). This differs from how the other protected characteristics are covered in other discrimination types, but in most cases, the protections are broadly similar or stronger for pregnancy and maternity.
Pregnancy and maternity discrimination protection mainly apply’s to a specific length of time known as the ‘protected period’. UK law says that after the protected period has ended, an action after that time might still amount to unfavourable treatment if it was due to an action or decision made within the protected period.
When is being treated differently due to a pregnancy legal?
It’s lawful for a service provider - such as a shop, swimming pool or gym, to refuse providing you with a service or treatment because you’re pregnant, if there are health and safety reasons for doing this.
Your rights under discrimination law
Employees are often unaware of their rights under discrimination law and therefore don’t know what to do or who to turn to if they’re being discriminated against.
If you feel you are being discriminated against due to your pregnancy, it’s important to take all the correct steps in order to strengthen your negotiating position when it comes to claiming compensation for or a settlement exit package. If you’re being discriminated against at work you should:
tell your manager - put it in writing and keep a dated copy of the letter or email
talk to your HR team or trade union - they’ll be able to give you advice
collect evidence - keep a diary recording all of the times you’ve been discriminated against
raise a formal 'grievance' (complaint) if the discrimination doesn't stop. All employers must have a grievance process - ask your manager or HR team for more information on this
You could make a claim at an employment tribunal if you can't solve your problem using the grievance procedure.
Our specialist maternity and pregnancy discrimination solicitors work in employment law cases with experience in discrimination claims and can help you with your claim.
Use Avery Walters maternity discrimination solicitors to get a settlement agreement after experiencing workplace discrimination
If you believe you've been unfairly discriminated against because of your pregnancy, don't just accept it.
Speak to one of our experienced maternity and pregnancy discrimination lawyers about challenging all pregnancy-biased behaviour as you may be able to get compensation from your employer for financial loss and emotion pain.
Our specialist team of maternity discrimination solicitors represent clients who have suffered discrimination in a variety of aspects of their lives. We have past experience in successfully securing compensation for clients who have suffered discrimination at the hands of many organisations.
Contact our Maternity and Pregnancy Discrimination Solicitors
If you feel you have been the subject of discrimination, treated less favourably due to your pregnancy at work and are thinking of making a compensation claim then contact us. Our maternity discrimination lawyers regularly represent clients in discrimination claims locally to our offices. We offer a NO-WIN-NO-FEE on ALL employment claims for Claimants.
For specialist employment law advice, contact our maternity and pregnancy discrimination solicitors in our Harrogate or Leeds offices today for a specialist, no-obligation FREE initial-consultation.