Biden Administration Issues Final Rule Securing Vital Protections for Pregnant Workers

On April 19, the Biden Administration issued a final rule to implement the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act (PWFA), landmark legislation included in the bipartisan FY23 omnibus appropriations bill. The PWFA requires most employers with 15 or more employees to provide “reasonable accommodations,” or changes at work, for a worker’s known limitations related to pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions, unless the accommodation will cause the employer an undue hardship.

The rule provides important clarity that will allow pregnant workers to work while maintaining a healthy pregnancy and help employers understand their duties under the law. Highlights from the final regulation include: an expansive definition of “pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions” that includes abortion; numerous examples of reasonable accommodations; guidance regarding limitations and medical conditions for which workers may seek reasonable accommodation; clarification on when supporting documentation is needed when requesting a reasonable accommodation; and an explanation of when an accommodation would impose an undue hardship on an employer. The final rule will become effective on June 18, 2024.

By Pat
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