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Telling Your Boss

Iím Excited, But Will My Boss Think Itís Good News?

You just found out youíre pregnant, and you canít wait to share the good news!  Future dad is the first to find out, and heís already trying to rub and talk to your belly.  Do you really need to wait 12 weeks to tell everyone else? 

Maybe youíll just tell a few folks before you finish the first trimester.  This way your mother-in-law can get off your back about giving her grandchildren, and maybe you can convince your best friend to hurry up and get pregnant too!  Even the person at the checkout counter who sold you What to Expect When Youíre Expecting, along with every other pregnancy related book you could carry, was excited for you. 

Youíre thinking thereís no way anyone would react poorly to your big news when you suddenly rememberóyou still have to tell your boss.

While some women will find their bosses are surprisingly supportive about their pregnancy, it is far too common to hear about women who were once on the fast track at work and suddenly find they have hit a glass ceiling after they have a family.  Even bosses with families of their own may find themselves discriminating against employees who are soon to be parents.  No matter how you think your boss is going to respond, you need to be smart and protect yourself.

What can you do to protect yourself?  This varies depending on your individual situation, but one thing all pregnant woman should do is educate themselves about their rights at work.  By educating yourself, you will be able to recognize when you are being treated unfairly and will be able to ensure that you receive all of the benefits you are entitled to.

Second, no matter when you decide to tell your boss you are pregnant, put it in writing.  This doesnít have to be a fancy statement with lots of legal language.  A simple note stating that you are pregnant and want to inquire about any benefits available to you during your pregnancy will suffice.  You should give a copy of this note to both your boss and to human resources, and you should both sign and date the note.

This written statement protects you in the event your employer does violate the law.  Without it, your employer may argue that they had no knowledge of your pregnancy.  While the law does not state that informing your employer needs to be written, a written statement clearly shows that your employer had actual knowledge of your pregnancy and will prevent any defense of ignorance. 

For more information on understanding the rights you have at work when you are pregnant or to discuss how and when to tell your boss the good news, visit or contact Attorney Sarah B. Schlehr directly at (310) 492-5757.

This Belly Scoop has been sponsored by Ms. Pregnancy Lawyer, Sarah B. Schlehr!


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Sarah Schlehr, your pregnancy lawyer






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