Finding out im pregnant during job application process

9 posts in this topic

Hi All,

I need a little advice...I found out I am pregnant (complete surprise) while I was going through job interviews with a couple of different companies here in Germany. I now have two offers (permanent contracts) and would really like to start working again as I moved here 18 months ago and have worked so hard to learn the language and im finally in a place where im confident enough to work in German.

 

I would start working in January through to mid-May after which I plan on taking 1 years maternity leave. My question is, at what point should I let my prospective employer know of my pregnancy as I am worried about their reaction and our relationship going forward? 

 

Thanks :)

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You are under no legal obligation to tell them that you're pregnant. Whether you do and how that will affect your chances of being hired is everybody's guess.

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What Jeba said. They are not allowed to ask and you are not obliged to mention it.

I think (not 100% sure) the only exception would be if you applied for a befristete Position and you would lose the entire period because of the pregnancy.

 

Here is an interesting link providing the pros and cons of such a decision : 

https://karrierebibel.de/bewerbung-in-der-schwangerschaft/#Contra-Darum-sollten-Sie-sich-in-der-Schwangerschaft-nicht-bewerben

 

I think the biggest issue is what would happen if you really like the job and you could picture yourself staying long term there and they hold a grudge against you and start bullying you (horror stories can be found on the internet).

 

But as I said the law is on your side, the decision is yours and the possible consequences (if any) will be only due to how they will act.

 

Anyway good luck with your choice and congratulations on the happy news !

 

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It's difficult. It also depends on the job. 

 

You don't have to tell them you are pregnant unless that has any implications on your job. i.e. you're in the kind of job where a pregnancy will land you with a "Arbeitsverbot" by a doctor. Kindergarten and primary school employees sometimes get that. I forgot which illness they are having to avoid though. Or some machine operators. In the past: hairdressers because the chemicals were not considered safe. Or in some lab. 

But there is no time frame in which you have to tell them. 

 

On the other hand, you cannot hide it forever and - also depending on the job - you might still be in your probationary period by the time it is very obvious or even when you go on maternity leave. So you might not win anything by not saying anything. 

 

i have a colleague who was hired and asked to come by with the contract. She then told her future boss that she was pregnant and asked if it was ok for him to have to look for a temporary replacement six months after she started. He was so she signed the contract. 

I also know someone who withdrew her application when she learned she was pregnant and the company held the position for her until she wanted to go back to work. 

 

It is very rare, but it happens. It mostly depends how much in demand your skills are. 

 

If I hired somebody and it turns out they were pregnant when they started the job, I would probably be seriously pissed at first. But I would understand why they did it and would not let them go, probationary period or not. Provided I hadn't been thinking about it before, anyway. 

 

It depends on the company and the culture there, your direct superior, his or her superior. Two offers sound very good, though. Congratulations! 
I know this post doesn't give you any clear answer, but maybe some info to think about.  

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Some good points.

 

However regarding this

47 minutes ago, maxie said:

On the other hand, you cannot hide it forever and - also depending on the job - you might still be in your probationary period by the time it is very obvious or even when you go on maternity leave. So you might not win anything by not saying anything. 

 

If she is hired, they cannot fire her even in the Probation period:

 

Quote

Arbeitnehmerinnen, die einen neuen Job antreten und während der vertraglich festgeschriebenen Probezeit schwanger werden, sind durch das Mutterschutzgesetz vor einer Kündigung geschützt – und das bis zum Ablauf von vier Monaten nach der Entbindung. Spätestens ein halbes Jahr nach der Anstellung greift anschließend der gesetzliche Kündigungsschutz. Der Arbeitnehmerin kann folglich nicht mehr ohne Grund gekündigt werden. Das bedeutet: Der eigentliche Erprobungszweck einer Probezeit entfällt und die Probezeit wird faktisch verkürzt.

 

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4 hours ago, Alexnf said:

If she is hired, they cannot fire her even in the Probation period:

 

Quote

Arbeitnehmerinnen, die einen neuen Job antreten und während der vertraglich festgeschriebenen Probezeit schwanger werden, sind durch das Mutterschutzgesetz vor einer Kündigung geschützt – und das bis zum Ablauf von vier Monaten nach der Entbindung. Spätestens ein halbes Jahr nach der Anstellung greift anschließend der gesetzliche Kündigungsschutz. Der Arbeitnehmerin kann folglich nicht mehr ohne Grund gekündigt werden. Das bedeutet: Der eigentliche Erprobungszweck einer Probezeit entfällt und die Probezeit wird faktisch verkürzt.

Thanks. I did not know that! 

 

Imho, it is not a good way to start a working relationship though, is it? 

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Thanks for the advice everyone... I think its best if I tell them before I sign my contract out of respect for my team and relationship with my employer.

 

Its a very tricky situation and quite unfortunate that women still have to think about implications of pregnancy in this day and age. I understand the inconvenience companies go through during maternity leave and so on but as someone who is trying to work hard and build a family without relying on government handouts, I hope that my decisions and determintation can be respected :) 

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2 hours ago, lighting bolt said:

inconvenience companies go through during maternity leave

 

If you're going to take a year off after ~7 months of company investment of training and work, it's more than inconvenient.

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2 hours ago, lighting bolt said:

I think its best if I tell them before I sign my contract

You could do what my colleague did and ask for a meeting once they have sent you the contract. I think it is better to explain that in person and they might be so interested in you that they are willing to work with you. I know my colleague's boss was very impressed that she told him before signing the contract. 

 

You say that you have two job offers. Theoretically, you could say yes to one, go in for a meeting and if they decide to take back their offer, you can try the other one. That is, if you are interested in both positions. 

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