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Question abt returning to work from maternity leave and differential pay. California

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  • Question abt returning to work from maternity leave and differential pay. California

    I just recently return to work from being on maternity leave. I'm a graphic designer and I was working a 1st shift before I left for maternity leave. My employer hired a temp to replace me in my absence but then decided to keep the temp full time and they told me that now the only available shift they had left was the 3rd shift (9p to 5a) and that they needed one of the 'experienced' graphic designers to be on that position, which is why they will not place the new guy on the 3rd shift. I know that the previous 3rd shift designer was making more for being on 3rd shift but he quit and they never hired a replacement for him, so I suppose I'm his replacement now. Can I receive differential pay for taking on this shift now? If I had known before I left for my maternity leave that I would have to come back to the 3rd shift, I would have definitely looked elsewhere for work during my time off. It just doesn't seem right to me and I almost feel like they are trying to discourage me from working here so that I will resign. Can I challenge them and request for my original shift back?

  • #2
    How long were you on maternity leave?
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

    Comment


    • #3
      This is how it works in Ca. "if/when" a pregnant employees qualifies for all available leaves (PDL, FMLA, CFRA)

      It's possible for an employee to get up to 7 mos. of job protected pregnancy leave in Ca. though all women will not qualify for the total 7 mos.:
      In Ca. most female employees can take up to 4 mos. of leave for childbearing & pregnancy related disability (subject to med. certification that an actual disability exists) under the Fair Employment & Housing Act. The fed. FMLA & the state act are generally in alignment except in Ca. a woman can take a 4-mo. pregnancy disability leave followed by a 3-mo. fam. med. leave. This is the rare circumstance when leave under the FMLA & Ca. Fam. Rights Act don't run concurrently--FMLA leave will run concurrently with the 4-mos. of pregnancy disability leave, after which the Fam. Rights Act can be invoked for an add'l. 3-mo. leave. (for bonding)

      An employee will not get the total 4 mos. of PDL (pregnancy disability leave) unless they are disabled for 4 mos. Also for FMLA & CFRA the requirements for them must be met. Ca. employees are entitled to leave under PDL regardless of the length of employment or hours worked. Most employers with 5 or more employees are subject to PDL.


      While off on disability, an employee should get Ca. SDI (state disability insurance) to get paid while off on disability.
      The PFL (paid family leave) pays employee while off on bonding leave.

      Here's a link that will take you to all the leaves:
      http://www.las-elc.org/help-leaves.html

      PS - You may be entitled under law to take up to seven months leave—without being terminated from your job—by combining pregnancy leave with leave to bond with your newborn child. In most cases, your employer must reinstate you to the same or comparable position after your leave, including the same pay, benefits and working conditions.
      Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

      Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by cbg View Post
        How long were you on maternity leave?
        I was gone a total of 25 weeks. I was on PFL and took an extra 6 weeks UPFL for bonding.

        I know that I was protected to return to my same positions, but what about working hours? I used to work regular business hous and now I am forced to work the night shift. I dont think the working conditions are equivalent. If they needed a 3rd shift worker, shouldn't they have returned me to my regular hours and move my temporary replacement to the nsxt available position? Or is that sort of thingto their discretion?

        Comment


        • #5
          The law just says - same or comparable position after your leave, including the same pay, benefits and working conditions.

          Besides PDL (pregnancy disability leave), did you qualify for CFRA? (meet the requirements)

          PDL protects your job up to 4 mos. (or could be less if you are disabled for less than 4 mos.) - CFRA for bonding protects it for an additional 3 mos. after you are no longer disabled. The most you could get re job protection would be 7 mos. but that is if you qualify for both PDL & CFRA. (FMLA if applicable just runs concurrent with PDL.)

          PFL is not actually leave but income you receive when out on bonding leave - PFL offers no job protection - job protection would be under CFRA.

          Did you read the link provided re the various leaves/income?
          Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

          Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

          Comment


          • #6
            I am not an expert on CA maternity leave, which can be quite confusing. However, based on my understanding WHICH MAY BE FAULTY, you were out too long for you to have retained the right of return to your prior shift. Under Federal law, that right is exhausted after 12 weeks; if I am reading the chart correctly that right is exhausted under CA law after 4 months.

            But as I do not lay any claim to being an expert, I see no downside to your calling the state and inquiring whether you have that right under these circumstances.
            The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

            Comment


            • #7
              It's possible for an employee in Ca. to have up to 7 months of job protected leave for a pregnancy (though all employees will not qualify for 7 mos.) 4 mos. under PDL & 3 mos. under CFRA.

              Don't know if OP qualified for CFRA (met the requirements) She didn't say.

              PS -OP; if you believe any of your rights were violated under the Ca. leave laws, a complaint should be filed with the Ca. Dept. Fair Employment & Housing.
              Last edited by Betty3; 12-15-2012, 08:16 PM. Reason: add PS
              Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

              Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

              Comment

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