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It is illegal for your boss to take adverse employment action against you for engaging in one of the following protected activities:
- Asserting your right against employment discrimination based on your race, age, religion, sex, color, pregnancy, marital status, national origin, or disability;
- Mentioning or initiating a complaint regarding workplace safety violations;
- Discussing wages with supervisors or co-workers;
- Taking family or medical leave;
- Refusing to engage in unlawful behavior;
- Properly reporting the illegal activities of your employer;
- Initiating a complaint regarding your employer’s failure to pay you;
- Filing a claim for workers’ compensation benefits; or
- Assisting another individual in the enforcement of their rights as an employee against their employer.
And even if your attempts to assert your rights are unsuccessful, your employer cannot punish you if you had a reasonable belief that your employer was breaking the law.
There are many ways employers across this nation retaliate against employees with valid legal claims against them. Unlawful retaliation can include:
- Terminating an employee’s job,
- Reducing an employee’s pay,
- Transferring an employee to an unwanted position or location,
- Eliminating an employee’s benefits,
- Harassing an employee,
- Excluding an employee from job or training opportunities,
- Refusing to hire a job candidate,
- Demoting an employee, or
- Threatening to punish an employee.
Pay close attention to the timing of any adverse actions taken against you in the workplace and speak to a skilled Florida employer retaliation attorney at Brenton Legal. If punishment or mistreatment occurred suspiciously close to when you engaged in a protected activity, you likely have a retaliation claim on your hands.
Proving Unlawful Retaliation
You have a right to confront your employer about its retaliatory actions, but that confrontation is rarely easy. Employers can defend themselves from complaints against illegal retaliation by claiming that they had non-discriminatory and non-retaliatory reasons for disciplining their employees. In many cases, these employer claims are false, and employees need to collect solid evidence to show their employers had unlawful motivations.
You can prove that your employer did not have lawful reasons to punish you by presenting evidence of your stellar work history, discriminatory statements made by your employer, or your employer’s failure to punish similarly situated employees who did not assert their rights. This evidence can include the following:
- Witness testimony,
- Copies of employer policies,
- Wage records,
- Personnel records, and
- Copies of employment agreements.
If you decide to initiate or help with a complaint against your boss, speak to an attorney immediately and start taking notes about any significant events that occur in your workplace. A knowledgeable employment attorney can help you gather all information necessary to help you in your complaint and protect you from an employer’s retaliatory behavior.
Initiating a Retaliation Complaint
Several government agencies enforce employee rights against employer retaliation. Depending on the reason your employer unlawfully disciplined you, you can file a complaint with one of the following agencies:
- The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC),
- The Florida Commission on Human Relations (FCHR), or
- The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL).
If you plan to file an EEOC complaint, your employer must have at least 15 employees, and you must file within 180 days (or 300 days if your complaint is covered by state law). You have to initiate FCHR complaints within 365 days. And you have between one and three years to file a wage complaint with the DOL. You can also file a retaliation lawsuit in civil court, but you will likely need to submit a government complaint first.
Remedies for Employer Retaliation
So, what can you recover in a complaint after an employer unlawfully punishes you? You can receive financial compensation and other remedies, including:
- Back pay,
- Liquidated damages,
- Compensation for financial losses,
- Reinstatement of benefits,
- Punitive damages,
- Payment for emotional distress,
- Job reinstatement or placement, and
- Legal costs.
Just like it might argue that there were legal reasons to discipline you, your employer might try to diminish the damages you are owed. A skilled advocate from Benton Legal can help maximize your damages and ensure that your employer is held responsible for all relief you deserve.
The Attorneys at Brenton Legal Can Help You
You deserve to be respected in your workplace. And hiring an employer retaliation lawyer in Florida is crucial to a successful retaliation complaint. At Brenton Legal, our employer retaliation attorneys help employees across Florida recover the maximum amount of relief possible in their claims. We are well-respected among our peers and clients, and we are straightforward with clients regarding their chances at legal victory so that they don’t waste their time with costly and stressful litigation.
If you need help adjudicating a claim against your employer or want to know whether your claim has merit, we can guide you in the right direction. Our consultations are free, so there is no harm in speaking to us about your workplace concerns. To schedule a case review, please call us at 954-639-4644 or reach out to us on our website.
Impressed, does his homework, objective and passionate. This guy does not sugar coat the facts he will tell you straight up what’s going on and in today’s world that’s important. If you have a legal issue this guy will stand by you and fight for you. Very impressed.
Ryan represented us in a high-profile religious discrimination lawsuit. His work product and professionalism are exceptional.
I had a great experience with Ryan. Awesome lawyer but also very caring and genuine. Communicates very well. I know where to go if I ever have an issue and will absolutely be recommending this firm to whoever I can.
When it comes to family, everyone would agree you do not just walk into any law office. You do your research. You talk to people. You make sure you are going to receive representation that you can wholeheartedly trust, at a reasonable value, and that will place you or your family member in a better position. Brenton Legal is that law firm – bar none. I trust this firm to help guide my family and that should tell you everything you need to know if you read reviews.
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