OK, I need some thoughts/opinions. Those of you who have been through the Canadian maternity leave system will understand why this is an issue...for those of you who haven't, all you need to know is that there is a big difference between being a contract employee and a permanent employee.
I work for a very large company, and right now my position is a contract, which is up in July. When I was hired, my manager said that he intended to hire me on permanently when my contract was up if he could, but the company is very specific about "head count" and "revenues" (ie he can only hire me permanently if the revenues hit a certain target).
Unfortunately, revenues haven't quite hit target, but they are on track to do so by the fall. So he's offered to extend my contract until October, with a guarantee of permanent hire then (although I DON'T have that guarantee in writing yet - the paperwork is in the works).
HERE'S THE THING: if I am a "permanent" employee when I go on mat leave, I get some very important benefits that I wouldn't be entitled to if I am a "contract" employee:
1) legally guaranteed to have my job waiting for me when I come back to work in a year, and
2) salary top up, which makes taking a year off of work financially possible.
Now that I am pregnant, I'm worried that once I tell them that I will be going on mat leave in January, there is nothing to stop them from simply extending my contract to January and then ending it, leaving me without a job? Or, less bad but still sucky, they extend my contract to cover the course of my mat leave (ie so that I still work for the company but don't get the benefits)?
It would be nice if I could hide the pregnancy until AFTER getting that permanent job offer in writing, but I seriously doubt I can keep this belly under wraps until October. I'm going to have to announce it while I'm still on contract status....I just don't know how things are going to play out once I do.
The company that I work for is great, and my manager is great too - very pro family, so I honestly don't see them screwing me over on purpose. But at the same time, they are also about bottom lines...so they might screw me over anyway. I don't know....any thoughts??