Maternity: Key Risks

The law offers certain protections to pregnant woman and those on maternity leave. So, you are likely to find yourself facing an employment tribunal claim if, for example, you deny a pregnant woman access to training or promotion opportunities; take periods of pregnancy-related sickness absence (which occur during pregnancy) into account when managing absence or in a redundancy selection; or fail to consult an employee on maternity leave in a redundancy situation.

It is important to be aware of specific duties, such as giving employees on maternity leave priority for suitable available vacancies in a redundancy situation; notifying employees of their maternity leave end date; and allowing employees returning from maternity leave to return (in most cases) to the same job and (in all cases) on terms and conditions that are no less favourable.

Here we highlight the key risks relating to pregnancy and maternity, but detailed advice on managing pregnancy and maternity can be found throughout the pregnancy and maternity section.

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