Due Date: Announcing the arrival of Utah’s newest pregnancy law!
Savvy business owners already know that Utah law prohibits discrimination against employees because of pregnancy. However, the Utah legislature recently decided to take the law one step further. Beginning May 10, 2016, Utah businesses with at least 15 employees are required to provide reasonable accommodations to employees for conditions related to pregnancy, childbirth or breastfeeding (i.e., modifying the employee’s job duties; providing a private room for expressing breast milk; changing an employee’s work schedule; more frequent restroom/water/food breaks). In those rare cases where an accommodation would be very expensive or difficult, businesses owners may avoid legal liability by working with the employee to find a more reasonable alternative accommodation. Additionally, the new law requires Utah businesses to update their handbooks with a clear description of employee rights under this new law, or to post a notice in their workplace describing these same rights.
TAKE-AWAY: Immediately partner with HR or your legal counsel to update your company’s Employee Handbook with a full description of new employee rights under the pregnancy discrimination law. If you do not have a handbook and do not want a handbook, work with HR or legal counsel to prepare a compliant “Notice” to remain posted in your workplace at all times.