N.J. (Legal Newsline) — New Jersey Attorney General Christopher S. Porrino and
the state’s Division of Consumer Protection announced March 1 that the North
Jersey Dermatology Clinic has paid $150,000 to a former employee after allegations
of unlawfully discriminating against the employee by firing her when she went
on maternity leave.
involves an important issue – one that matters not only to women in the
workforce, but to entire families and to employers as well,” Porrino said. “The
fact is that our state and federal laws protect pregnancy, and employers need
to make certain their policies -- as well as their handling of situations
involving pregnant workers -- reflect a clear understanding of employee rights
under those laws.”
employee worked at North Jersey Dermatology’s office in Rockaway. She had
been employed since 2011 and became pregnant in 2015. She went on maternity
leave Sept. 15, 2015. After delivering her baby via Cesarean section, she needed
disability leave for close to two months.
According to the complaint, North
Jersey failed to provide her with any guidance about her federal rights related
to absence. When the employee tried to contact the company in early 2016 about
discussing a return to work, her calls allegedly went unanswered. The company’s chief
operating officer called two full weeks later, stating the company was
firing her for “job abandonment” because she never checked in during her leave
of absence, allegedly.
denied all allegations but agreed to the settlement.