“The most frequently alleged basis of discrimination in the federal sector and the most common discrimination finding in federal sector cases,” retaliation occurs when an employee engages in an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) or California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) protected act or opposition to an illegal employment practice and experiences an adverse employment action as a result. Depending on the circumstances, you may have as little as 6 months to file your lawsuit—so ACT NOW. Contact the nationally-recognized workplace retaliation lawyers at Wilshire Law Firm today by calling (800) 522-7274 for your absolutely FREE case consultation.
What Is Unlawful Workplace Retaliation?
Equal employment opportunity laws, both federal and state, allow employees and job applicants to assert their rights to a workplace free from discrimination and harassment. It is illegal for an employer to retaliate against any employee or job applicant who asserts this right by engaging in what is called a Protected Employee Action, or Protected Activity. These actions can take many forms; the following are some of the most common protected employee actions:
- Filing an EEO or FEHA charge, complaint, investigation, or lawsuit, OR serving as a witness
- Complaining to your employer about workplace discrimination and workplace harassment
- Refusing to engage in work that would result in discrimination towards others
- Resisting unwanted sexual advances
- Requesting reasonable accommodations for a disability or for a religious practice
- Questioning co-workers about their salaries to uncover potentially discriminatory wages
It is easy to imagine why workplace retaliation laws are in effect—without them, there would be “a chilling effect upon the willingness of individuals to speak out against employment discrimination or to participate in the EEOC’s administrative process or other employment discrimination proceedings.” Employees deserve unobstructed access to remedial measure that protect their right to oppose illegal employment practices. If your employer is violating these rights, it is time to reach out to the trusted employment lawyers at Wilshire Law Firm.
Examples of Workplace Retaliation
Note that, although your employer cannot discipline or discharge you as a result of engaging in protected EEO or FEHA activities, you are only guarded against adverse employment actions that are either discriminatory or retaliatory. This means that your employer still has the freedom to discipline and even terminate you for reasons that are not discriminatory or retaliatory. Common negative employment actions which could be considered retaliation if they occurred in response to an employee engaging in a protected activity include:
- Wrongful termination
- Pay cut or loss of hours
- Denied a promotion OR passed over for a position
- Unfair performance review
- Exclusion from work activities
- Physical and/or verbal harassment from co-workers or supervisors
Keep in mind that some retaliatory actions are less obvious than others. If you are not sure whether or not your employer has retaliated against you, contact the workplace harassment attorneys at Wilshire Law Firm as soon as possible.
Protecting Your Legal Rights
Retaliation claims can be complex due to the multiple federal and state statutes that may be invoked in any particular case. For a successful retaliation claim, you are required to demonstrate three things:
- You engaged in a protected employee action
- You were subjected to an adverse employment action by your employer
- There is a causal link between the negative actions your employer took and the protected activity you engaged in
All three of these elements must be proven, otherwise, the workplace retaliation claim is invalid. Your first step should be to exhaust any internal remedial courses of action with your employer in an attempt to end the retaliatory behavior. If possible, gather detailed documentation of the retaliation, including taking note of any incidents that occur, and speak with HR or management to try and devise a solution.
If this fails, however, workplace retaliation victims should retain a skilled employment lawyer from Wilshire Law Firm to ensure that their claim is successful. Our award-winning attorneys have recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for our clients, and they can do the same for you—recovering damages such as:
- Lost Wages
- Lost Benefits
- Diminished Earning Capacity
- Pain and Suffering
- Punitive Damages
Unfortunately, the statute of limitations for bringing your claim forward can be as short as 180 days, so take action now. Call the workplace retaliation attorneys today at (800) 522-7274 or fill out our online contact form to get started with your FREE case consultation—you’ll see why service is our signature.