Pregnant women in the workplace who suffer occupational injuries may still obtain workers’ compensation benefits, but the issue of pre-existing conditions such as pregnancy may complicate the process. When employees suffer injuries as a result of workplace accidents, they often rely on the state’s workers’ compensation program to cover their medical bills and help keep them afloat until they recover and can return to work. The legal rights of a pregnant woman entitle a worker to these same benefits if injured on the job, regardless of her condition.
Suffering an On-The-Job Injury While Pregnant
Provided their injuries were caused while performing work duties and not as a result of their conditions, pregnancy alone does not disqualify injured workers from obtaining workers’ compensation benefits. Under Nevada’s workers’ compensation law, employers in the state must provide coverage for all employees. Protected by state and federal laws against workplace discrimination and harassment, pregnant women in the workplace cannot be denied workers’ compensation benefits or receive reduced benefits based on their pregnancies. Rather, denials may occur if the injury was the result of horseplay in the workplace, the benefits were sought through fraudulent requests, the injured worker neglected to complete the necessary steps to recover benefits, the injury occurred at a work-related social event outside of normal work duties, or the employer otherwise disputes the claim.
Legal Rights of a Pregnant Woman in the Workplace
State and federal laws prohibit employers from firing, harassing, rejecting for jobs or promotions, giving lesser assignments, or otherwise discriminating against workers because they are, were, or could become pregnant. Further, employers cannot hold pregnancy-related conditions against workers, and they may have to provide accommodations to allow pregnant workers to safely perform their jobs. While these protections do not specifically address pregnant employees’ ability to recover workers’ compensation for on-the-job injuries, they do safeguard injured workers from having benefits denied simply because they were pregnant at the time the workplace accidents occurred.
Becoming Pregnant While Receiving Workers’ Compensation
Just as workers cannot have their claims denied because they were pregnant at the time their occupational injuries occurred, employees will not necessarily lose their benefits should they become pregnant while receiving workers’ compensation. People should keep in mind, however, that the state’s Workers’ Compensation Commission may stop payments in cases when workers’ injuries have improved beyond the reports or other fraudulent activity has transpired.
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