Labour LawMaternity leave

Labor law: I am pregnant, when do I have to tell my employer?

Are you expecting?

As a young working woman, you need to know how to deal with your employer. Is there an obligation to announce the pregnancy? and if so, when? 

First of all, you should know that a pregnant woman is protected against dismissal throughout her pregnancy and during 16 weeks after giving birth (a total period of about 56 weeks!). This applies whether the pregnancy announcement was made or not.

Thus, there is no legal obligation for an employee to disclose her pregnancy to her employer. 

However, it is advisable to do it as soon as possible, as the announcement of pregnancy legally binds the employer to provide his employee with the “Health Protection for Pregnant Women”. This protection offers better working conditions and the employee will be able to : 

– take longer breaks to rest; 

– limit her working time to 9 hours a day; 

– refuse to carry out heavy work (carrying heavy objects, for example); 

– refuse contact with harmful substances; 

– require an adaptation of her workplace to her needs

The announcement should also be made early enough as a courtesy to the employer, who will be obliged to find a replacement during the maternity leave. It is common practice to announce a pregnancy as early as the third month of pregnancy.

If the pregnancy results in a working incapacity due to the employee’s health condition or as a result of the nature of the tasks to be performed, the pregnant woman is obliged to notify her employer and submit a medical certificate.

It should also be noted that a pregnant woman is not protected against dismissal during atrial period with her employer! It is therefore in her best interest to wait until the end of this period (usually three months) to make the announcement.

Want to know more? Tell us about your situation! Lawrence experts answer your questions and assist you in all your legal procedures!


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