If you have been discriminated against by an employer or manager within a job setting, you may have a case to file a civil rights lawsuit and claim compensation.
What is an example of a civil violation in the workplace? We’ll run through some examples that include harassment, inappropriate punishment, unequal working conditions, or discrimination.
How Are Civil Rights Protected at Work?
Several characteristics are protected by law, and it is illegal for an employer to treat an employee unfairly or unequally due to their:
- Age, gender, or disability
- Religion, ancestry, or race
- Marital, familial, or veteran status
An employer may have violated your civil rights if you have been paid less than your peers for the same work, treated differently, or fired because of any protected status listed above.
What Counts as Workplace Discrimination?
Examples of workplace discrimination can include being dismissed because you become pregnant, being refused a promotion because of your age, or being turned down for a role because you are a veteran. If you have been discriminated against, you can raise an internal complaint, bring a formal grievance, or file a legal claim for reparations. You can sue an employer, even if you remain in the role, if they have committed or allowed any negative action that contradicts your protected characteristics as listed above.
Much depends on the reason for the action, but if you have cause to believe you have been treated unfairly based on your personal circumstances, you may have a legally pursuable case. Harassment and discrimination are two different categories, but both are equally serious and have legal consequences.
Any bias, unfairness, or discrimination may constitute workplace harassment, including inappropriate comments, physical touching, belittlement, public criticism, or sexual harassment. A civil rights attorney such as those at Strom Law can advise on the right legal action to take depending on the nature of the offense and your desired outcome.
What Evidence Can I Use to Prove Unfair Workplace Treatment?
Proving illegal harassment or discrimination can be complex, but legal processes are in place to offer support. Courts will accept a range of documents or accounts, such as:
- Emails, personal notes, HR records, or official complaints
- Testimonies from witnesses
- Workplace handbooks, contracts, or codes of conduct
- Write-ups of conversations, meetings, appraisals, or conversations with managers or workplace representatives
The more documentation and supporting witness statements you have, the stronger your case–although we recommend speaking with an attorney for further guidance. You do not necessarily need extensive evidence at the outset, and your lawyer can gather more proof during the lawsuit discovery phase.
What Type of Attorney Do I Need to File a Workplace Discrimination Claim?
Many people are confused by the distinction between a civil rights lawyer versus a human rights lawyer. You will typically need an experienced civil rights attorney to pursue a workplace claim in the US. Federal laws and the US Constitution cover your civil freedoms and right to work without discrimination, so a suitably qualified attorney, such as one at Strom Law Firm, will be the best representative.