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Interviewing while Pregnant
 This Feature
• About Interviewing while Pregnant
• Maternity Benefits Considerations
 Related Resources
• Attorney Referrals and Labor Laws
• Employment Discrimination
• Find "Family Friendly" Companies
• More Interview Topics
• Resumes and CVs
• Thank-You Letters
• Women's Resources  
 Elsewhere on the Web
• Facts About Pregnancy Discrimination
• Family and Medical Leave Act
• Pregnancy and Employment
• Should I disclose my pregnancy in job interviews?

About Interviewing

During job interviews, it is discriminatory for U.S. employers to ask if you're pregnant. Some might ask the "illegal" interview question anyway, out of ignorance or in blatant violation of discrimination laws. But either way, it's up to you whether or not to say anything about your pregnancy.

Natch, if you're obviously showing, you've already volunteered the information. Whether you intentionally or unintentionally reveal your pregnancy, it gives employers a loophole. They are allowed to list the duties of the job and ask if you are able to perform them. But it is illegal for them to deny you the job solely on the basis of your pregnancy, if it does not prevent you from performing the duties.

Unfortunately, there are still biased employers even in this day and age, who will deny you employment solely because you're pregnant. But even unbiased employers face the dilemma that you'll be away from your job on medical leave, within a short time after they hire you.

You face a dilemma too, which probably comes as no surprise. If you mention your pregnancy during interviews, the reality is that employers might not hire you, even though it's illegal. (You must prove discrimination to get relief.) On the other hand, if you don't mention it at all, it's inevitable that your new employer will find out soon after hiring you, and might be resentful that you didn't mention it up front. That can make your job miserable.

According to Alison Doyle, the Guide for Job Searching here at About, you might want to bring it up to prevent resentment down the road, and "to insure that you will have the insurance coverage you need for both your pregnancy and new baby." But she recommends that you first conduct interview business as usual and get the interviewer interested in your qualifications, before you reveal your pregnancy. Then, mention your pregnancy during the negotiation phase of your interview.

But, again, it's strictly up to you whether or not to reveal your pregnancy during interviews.

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Job Searching: Technical supports Equal Opportunity Employment.
Copyright © 2000, J. Steven Niznik. All Rights Reserved.

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