Disputes between employers and employees are not always easy to sort out, and this is particularly the case when it comes to discrimination and retaliation claims. Fortunately, there are relatively clear rules in place in terms of what employers may not do when an employee takes steps to exercise his or her rights under state or federal law.
We have previously discussed the fact that American employment law is always evolving. On both a federal level and on a state level, employment law may change rapidly from time to time. As a result, it is important to consult an attorney experienced in employment law if you feel that you are being discriminated against at work or are otherwise being treated unfairly, as you may be unaware of legal developments that could aid you in obtaining justice for the harm you have suffered.
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act protects older workers from age discrimination in the workplace. It is worth noting that this law only protects workers aged 40 and older from illegal discriminatory practices. Although some state laws protect young workers from discrimination based on youth, federal law only protects older workers from age discrimination.
It is well known that federal laws protect job seekers and employees from employment discrimination based on a number of characteristics. These “protected classes” include gender, race, national origin, religion, disability and pregnancy.
We frequently write about the kinds of biases and mistreatment that many Americans face while they are at work. Some forms of discrimination and mistreatment are obvious. For example, if your boss insists that he will fire you unless you sleep with him, you can be assured that he is behaving in an illegal manner. However, other forms of employment discrimination and harassment are more subtle. It is often difficult for workers to discern whether or not these more subtle negative behaviors are acceptable. It is important to understand that simply because a discriminatory or harassing behavior is subtle does not mean that this behavior is necessarily legal or in any way acceptable.
It is hard to believe that it is already September. It seems like only yesterday Americans were making New Year’s resolutions and rolling their eyes at the presence of Valentine’s Day fare in retail stores. However, it is indeed already autumn and many changes in the nation’s laws over the past nine months illustrate just how transformative 2014 has been to-date.
Under numerous circumstances, individuals wishing to hold an entity or entities accountable for legal conduct benefit both from filing a civil lawsuit and from alerting government agencies to the situation at hand. These simultaneous actions are often undertaken in both personal injury and business litigation scenarios. In the employment law context however, individuals must often alert a specific government agency to their plight before they can legally file an employment discrimination lawsuit.
The Family and Medical Leave Act is a federal law designed to allow workers to take time away from their jobs for specific and important parental and health reasons without fear of losing their positions or experiencing retaliation. If you or your spouse has recently given birth to or adopted a baby, or if you have a debilitating illness or injury and need to take time off of work to recover, you may be eligible to take FMLA leave.
In April of 2012, the influential Equal Employment Opportunity Commission held in a case entitled Macy v. Holder that employment discrimination against transgender individuals is indeed considered sex discrimination under the meaning advanced by federal law. This landmark case inspired hope within the LGBT community and among human rights advocates that transgender workers would be subjected to fewer and fewer instances of employment discrimination and that transgender discrimination victims would more easily be able to hold responsible parties accountable in court.
In 1997, 15,785 age discrimination claims were filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). In 2013, a staggering 21,396 claims alleging this type of employment discrimination were filed with the agency. Partially due to these raw numbers and partially due to the stories of affected workers being highlighted by the media, it has become apparent that age discrimination is on the rise in the American workplace.