Can you be fired at work while pregnant?

Hi Everyone,

Hope you had a great time. I just found out today that I’m pregnant. Before my Christmas vacation, Our Human resource personnel informed me that they have decided to move my job position to another  European country and offered me to move to that country or be fired. I sent a confirmation document from my doctor about the pregnancy today by post and the company should receive it by tomorrow. My  question is:

Can they really fire me given that I’m pregnant? I was told by a colleague that they can’t do that since pregnant women are somewhat protected.

Do you know any link where I can read more about this?
Anybody here was in the same boat as me?

Any ideas would be appreciated

Hi Jane,

First off - congratulations on your pregnancy news. :)

To answer your question, my understanding is that the "protection" applies from the date of your notification to your employer, until 1-month after your return from post-pregnancy leave, however the "protection" doesn't mean they can't dismiss or make you redundant, it just means they have to pay you for 6-months after you leave.  However, I suspect you won't be protected as they told you about the change in circumstance before you found out you were pregnant.  Probably not what you wanted to hear, sorry.

There is a provision that if the employer can prove that the dismissal is unrelated to the employee’s physical condition resulting from pregnancy or giving birth, then the protection does not apply, then whatever your contract stipulates is relevant.  Job transfer to another country (where you say they have offered you a new job) would appear at face value to fall into this category.

My advice is to speak to the HR department and ask if your pregnancy changes anything; also, speak to the local social services; assuming you have been paying into the system, then you should be entitled to the same social support as a Belgian citizen.

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