Basic information:

Appellant (plaintiff of the original suit): Ma Yueming

Respondent (defendant of the original suit): Gudumami (Shanghai) InformationConsulting Co., Ltd.

Court: the Third Intermediate People’s Court in Beijing

Case number: (2014) Sanzhong Minzhong Zi No. 01640

Key Points of the Judgment:

If, prior to the expiry of a fixed-term employment contract, the employer did not obtain the employees’ opinion on whether to sign a new employment contract without a fixed term and the employee did not make ​​any such request, the parties are deemed to have agreed to terminate the employment contract. Thereafter, if a female employee finds herself pregnant and claims compensation for costs such as the salary during the period of pregnancy, the cost ofobstetrical examinations and medical costs of delivery, her claims shall not be supported.

Facts:

On December 17, 2007, Ma Yueming (“Employee”) joined the Gudumami (Shanghai) Information Consulting Co., Ltd. (“Company”) as a web editor. The parties renewed their employment contract on November 17, 2008 and December 9, 2010, respectively. The last employment contract between the parties expired on December 16, 2012. The parties did not renew their contract after it expired.

On January 7, 2013, the Employee filed for arbitration and requested the Company to pay hersalary during the period of pregnancy, pay the cost of obstetrical examinationsand make a supplemental contribution for social insurance, housing funds, etc.

The court of the first trial dismissed all claims of the Employee. The Employee appealed to the second instance court.

Judgment:

The court of the second instance rejected the appeal and sustained the judgment of the first instance court.

Reasoning of the Court:

If neither of the parties proposed or asked to sign an open-ended employment contract upon the expiry of a fixed-term employment contract, it may be deemed that the parties agreed to end their employment contract. After the contract is ended, the Employee’s claim for prenatal treatment on the ground of finding herself pregnant lacks legal basis and should not be supported.

Source of the case: Judgment Document Website

KWM Comment: In practice, cases where a female employee claims compensation for relevant medical treatment or asks to reinstate the employment contract on the ground of finding herself pregnant are increasingly emerging. Under this circumstance, Seminar Minutes (Two) on Questions about the Applicable Law of Labor Disputes, issued by the Beijing Higher People's Court of Beijing and the Beijing Labor Dispute Arbitration Committee, clearly stipulates that after a mutual agreement to terminate has been reached, if the female employee discovers she is pregnant and asks to withdraw the termination agreement or to reinstate the original employment contract, her claim should not be supported in general.