Houston, TX – Discrimination is a serious problem that can result in legal action. Workplaces are only supposed to make crucial decisions about their employees based on neutral criteria such as merit or financial concerns. If a worker is terminated, demoted, loses pay, or negatively affected in any other way based on a protected characteristic, the employer may be sued and have to pay out damages to the victim.
Anti discrimination laws that apply to workplaces
There are various protected characteristics such as race, national origin, gender, age, and sexual orientation which are listed in federal and state employment laws. Things like hiring, layoffs, termination, and benefits cannot be based on a protected characteristic. Many anti discrimination measures are enforced and investigated by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Employers who violate these laws are often fined or subject to various other sanctions and lawsuits.
Federal discrimination law generally applies to workplaces with fifteen or more workers. Certain very small employers may either be covered under state law or not at all.
Lawsuits and proof of discrimination
Direct evidence of a discriminatory motive is rare unless the victim can find crucial evidence in emails or other documentation that explicitly shows discriminatory actions. However, it is also possible for discrimination to be proven in a court of law through circumstantial evidence. This can include things like the size and composition of a company’s workforce, or adverse actions that were taken against a worker as a form of retaliation based on the timing of the victim’s termination or demotion. Things like performance reviews have also been used as a pretext for discrimination in some cases as well if a worker is suddenly told that they are doing a poor job.
Remedies for victims
Because employment lawsuits go through the civil courts, the main kind of remedy available to victims is compensation, often called damages. The level of compensation in these cases can vary based on the severity of the victim’s losses and the employers behavior. In employment lawsuits, compensation tends to be tied to things like lost wages, interest on lost income, and costs of finding new employment or reinstatement. Because compensation is always decided at trial or through a settlement on a case by case basis, legal help from an attorney is the best way for a victim to get an estimate of the value of their case.
Labor issues in Texas
Moore and Associates deals with discrimination issues, as well as many other types of workplace problems in the Houston area. Workers who have questions about the legality of actions taken by their employer can contact the firm to get assistance.
Firm contact info:
440 Louisiana Street, Suite 675, Houston, TX 77002