The woman had applied for a permanent position as an aid administrator with the city of Borås in western Sweden.
When she was called to come in for an interview she informed her potential employer that she was pregnant.
She was subsequently informed that she was no longer under consideration for the position but that she was welcome to apply for another job with the city after she was once again ready to enter the workforce.
The woman brought her case to Sweden’s Equality Ombudsman (Diskrimineringsombudsmannen, DO), which has filed a lawsuit against the city of Borås alleging gender discrimination and an abuse of Sweden’s parental leave laws.
“This kind of discrimination and unfair treatment has serious negative consequences both for individuals and for equality between men and women in society,” ombudsman Agneta Broberg said in a statement.
“Considering these laws has been in place since 2001, it’s remarkable that things like this are still happening to this extent.”
Between 2009 and 2012, the ombudsman received 393 workplace discrimination complaints related to pregnancy. Twenty-two of the cases have resulted in settlements, while three other lawsuits resulted in guilty verdicts.
In a lawsuit filed on Tuesday with the Labour Court (Arbetsdomstolen) in Stockholm, the ombudsman is seeking 75,000 kronor ($11,800) in damages for the woman.