You’ve recently found out you’re pregnant and the first thought on your mind is your job. Telling an employer about your pregnancy does not have to happen right away. Many mothers wait until the second trimester to reveal their pregnancy to their employer.. The first trimester is when risk of miscarriage is highest. When you do decide to finally reveal your pregnancy to your employer, you need to make a list of important contacts within the company and your personal prenatal care to ensure you know who to contact when the pregnancy nears an end.
Health contacts during pregnancy are the lifelines women have with the people responsible for prenatal care. Make a list of all healthcare providers, including your family physician and any specialists you visit regularly. Keep a copy of the contact list in a public place at home and a personal copy in your purse.
During pregnancy, there are many questions about employment that will arise. Make a list of important employer contacts, including the personnel department, human resources and your immediate supervisor. If you are the supervisor, add the person taking your place during maternity leave to the list.
If you have private short term disability insurance, note all contact information for the company. Call the company during the second trimester for information on maternity leave and applying for short term disability benefits. Many companies will send the application forms well in-advance so you can look over the forms and have them ready when maternity leave is about to begin.
If you have company-based short term disability insurance, contact your human resources office for information on application and submission guidelines for short term disability coverage. Ask about paid vacation, sick time and personal leave in regards to short term disability. There is a waiting period from the time of application until payments are received. The waiting period is unpaid.
If your husband is taking paternity leave for the birth of your child, maintain a contact identical to your employer contacts. Have him talk with the human resource department during the third trimester regarding unpaid paternity leave. Some companies allow male employees to take sick time and other paid leave during paternity leave.
The Final Months
Most employers require 30 days notice before maternity leave can begin. To be safe, contact your human resources department 45 to 60 days before planned maternity leave with a specific date. At this time, gather all forms needed for short term disability, if applicable.