Americans with Disability Act
How Pregnancy is Covered Under ADA
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) does not consider a normal pregnancy to be a disability. But if you experience high-risk complications that substantially limit a major life activity, you may be considered disabled under the ADA and, therefore, entitled to reasonable accommodation to perform your job.
The possibility that high-risk complications may arise and cause you to be disabled is one of several good reasons to purchase short term disability for pregnancy. Twenty five percent of expectant women will experience one or more complications. These complications may cause you to miss work. The ADA does not address income replacement due to a disability. This is what you need to know:
Americans with Disabilities Act - Who Qualifies
All employers that have 15 or more employees must comply with the ADA. A person is considered disabled under the act if he or she has:
When is Pregnancy a Disability Under ADA
Normal pregnancy is not eligible under the ADA, as it is not a result of a physiological disorder. Complications prior to childbirth may be eligible as a protected status.
For example, a woman who suffers from hypertension while expecting may qualify for protected status. It must be shown that her hypertension limits, or is regarded as limiting a major life activity, which is often defined as a task that most people are able to perform adequately with very little difficulty.
If a pregnancy-related condition makes it difficult to perform one or more of these activities, then ADA provisions may apply, and the employer must make compliant accommodations.
ADA Accommodations for Pregnancy
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits discrimination in all employment practices. This includes a wide array of job practices ranging from hiring and firing, to compensation and advancement.
An employer must make reasonable accommodations if you qualify under the law. A reasonable accommodation is any modification or adjustment to a job or work environment that enables the disabled person to perform essential job functions.
What is most interesting to note is that if you are experiencing a normal and health pregnancy you are not protected under the law - you do not meet the criteria for disability under the law. Only women experiencing pregnancy complications have these protections. Don't ask for any special treatment from your employer unless you qualify.