Question

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Q: I have just found out that I am pregnant only 5 weeks and I am now into the 8 month of an eighteen month contract with a company I love. I will be due at the end of August and there has been talk of making me permanent as the company seem very happy with me and I have had very positive feedback - however they are creating a role for me. I am worried that now I am pregnant my contract will be terminated when I finish for maternity leave which would be mid August. What advice can you give, what rights do I have and do you have any suggestions about ways I can do the best by my employer - I very much want to be kept on.

 

A: The employer will be ill advised to terminate your employment because of the fact that you are pregnant and certainly to terminate your employment when you are on maternity leave. 

Maternity leave is protected leave in legislation and if the employment is terminated during this time you will have a water tight case under the Maternity Protection Act. 

Furthermore you will have more than one year’s service with your employer when you go on maternity leave in August. 

As you appear (from both parties perspective) to be a perfect fit for the job and the employer, the chances are that the employer will be keen to retain and attract you back after your maternity leave ends. 

The employer will most likely have to retain someone on a specific purpose (maternity leave) contract to cover for your absence and any help you can give them with this will be good.