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Employment protections for workers who are pregnant in Germany

All pregnant women in Germany are entitled to care from a midwife or a doctor during the pregnancy and after the birth.


Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) says that from the moment you discover that you are pregnant, you should visit a gynaecologist every four weeks – and every two weeks after the 32nd week of pregnancy. The costs of pregnancy care are met by your health insurance fund.

A working expectant mother cannot be fired during this period.

In fact in Germany, working expectant mothers enjoy a particular form of protection known as maternity protection (Mutterschutz).

This protection begins six weeks before the birth and ends eight weeks after the birth.

Pregnant women in Germany must not work during this period.  Their job is kept open for them and they can return to it at the end of their maternity leave.

They must also not work longer than 8.5 hours per day or undertake heavy physical work.

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If you are pregnant and would like to receive help with issues surrounding pregnancy and birth, support before and during pregnancy, as well as medical, social and legal advice, you can contact any of the following:
– the Migration Advisory Service for Adult Immigrants and the Youth Advisory Service
– health authorities and doctors (gynaecologists)
– pregnancy counselling/unwanted pregnancy counselling
– employers
– welfare and family associations
– churches
– social services offices