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38 Weeks pregnant and my employer says I have only 6 weeks of maternity leave because I don't qualify for FMLA,

Raleigh, NC |

I have been with the company for over 6 years and started working part time the past 2 years. My pregnancy might not go as planned and if I have a c section I would not be able to come back till 8 weeks instead of 6. Can my employer fire me even if the doctor says Im not able to return yet,or will they consider it as me quitting if Im not able to come back yet?

Attorney Answers 2


One of the FMLA eligibility requirements is that you must have worked a minimum of 1,250 hours within the 12 months immediately preceding the leave. If you have been working part-time, then perhaps you have not met that requirement.

My answers to questions posted on AVVO are intended to provide general information only, and are not intended to be legal advice. Employment law issues typically require a careful case-by-case analysis. Consequently, if you feel that you need legal advice, I would encourage you to consult in person with an employment attorney in your area.

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Yes. In North Carolina if you do not qualify for FMLA, then the employer is not required to allow you time off for any reason including pregnancy or another health condition. In rare circumstances, you might be able to argue pregnancy discrimination if the employer allows employees who are not FMLA covered, to have more than 6 weeks off for non-pregnancy related reasons. The bottom line is that an employer is not required to treat a pregnant employee better than a non-pregnant employee.

Kirk J. Angel is an experienced attorney who focuses his practice on employment law. Mr. Angel, who has practiced employment law for more than 15 years, represents clients throughout North Carolina and more information about him is available at This response is for general informational purposes and does not constitute legal advice. Additionally, this response does not create an attorney client relationship. If you need legal advice, please contact a lawyer in your state who practices in the appropriate area.

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