Utah Passes Pregnancy Accommodation Law

pier-801812_640Effective May 10, employers in Utah with 15 or more employees must provide a reasonable accommodation to an employee who requests it on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, or any related condition—unless it would create an undue hardship to the employer.

According to the Utah state anti-discrimination statute, which this new law amends, an undue hardship is an action that requires significant difficulty or expense when considered in relation to factors such as the size of the organization, the organization’s financial resources, and the nature and structure of the organization.

An employer may require a certification from the employee's health care provider regarding the need for a reasonable accommodation. Employers may request that the certification include the date the reasonable accommodation should begin, how long the accommodation will likely be needed, and a statement explaining the medical advisability of the accommodation. However, an employer may not require certification for more frequent restroom, food, or water breaks.

Although several pieces of federal legislation require accommodation for pregnancy in many situations, the new Utah state law unequivocally requires accommodation in the event of pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding, or related condition, even in the case of a “normal” pregnancy.

Employers in Utah must provide written notice concerning an employee's rights to reasonable accommodations under this law. This information may be included in an employee handbook or posted in a conspicuous place in the employer's place of business.

Have additional questions on how to keep compliant with these ever-changing regulations?  CoastalHR's Certified HR Professionals are available to help!  Contact us today at 858.565.2123 for more information.