Workplace retaliation in New York City is an employer’s way of punishing an employee or job applicant for reporting illegal activities or standing up against illegal activities, such as discrimination, sexual harassment, or criminal actions, that are occurring in the workplace. Retaliation is illegal based on New York City laws and federal laws. For the past 25 years, the attorneys at Derek Smith Law Group have helped victims of workplace retaliation get the justice they deserve.
Workplace retaliation in New York City is when an employer decides to “punish” you for reporting an unlawful practice. This is also called an adverse employment action. As adverse employment action can come in a number of forms, such as:
• Pay decrease
• Decrease in hours
• Poor performance reviews
• Negative Work evaluations
Workplace retaliation requires certain elements to prove. You must prove that your employer’s actions were directly related to your protected actions. This means you must prove that you are being punished as opposed to deserving of being fired, demoted, or any other retaliatory punishments that can be passed down to you. Three types of evidence can help prove this:
1.Direct Evidence. This is often called the “smoking gun.” Direct evidence is written or verbal evidence that expresses the reason for your negative treatment or punishment is directly related to your actions of reporting the company’s behavior. This type of evidence is not common, however it does occur, which is why it is essential to keep every written communication between you and your employer or sent to you by your employer.
- Disparate Evidence. This evidence is much more common. Disparate evidence is when it can be shown that the retaliation occurred in close proximity to your report of an incident. This can also occur when it can be shown that other employees with similar infractions or issues do not receive the same treatment at you and they have not reported anything to HR or authorities, such as discrimination, sexual harassment, or criminal activity.
- Policy Evidence. In some cases of retaliation, the employee policies and procedures can be to blame for retaliation. The policy may say that if an employee refuses to partake in a criminal action as instructed by an employer, he or she may be fired. This type of evidence can be all that is needed to prove retaliation.
Workplace retaliation can come in many forms and can look very different from instance to instance. Here are some examples of workplace retaliation in New York City:
• Termination for taking FMLA for a very ill parent
• Decrease in salary for reporting a case of religious discrimination to HR
• Demotion for refusing a supervisor’s sexual advances
• Termination because you took off the days needed to celebrate the Jewish High Holidays for which you used approved vacation time
• Reassignment because you reported race discrimination to HR
• Termination because you reported being harassed for a heath condition
• Suspension for refusing to interfere with an ongoing legal investigation of your company
• Poor performance reviews for reporting military discrimination to HR
• Calling ICE because a non-citizen employee refused to steal for the company
• A negative performance evaluation that resulted in not getting an annual raise because you reported being made fun of for your age to HR
• Reduction of hours because you agreed to testify for your co-worker in a discrimination case brought against your supervisor
• You refuse to submit false claims to the company’s insurance carrier. Your work VISA expired yesterday. Your supervisor reports you to ICE.
• Reduction of hours for joining the local workers’ union
• You report your su8pervisor to HR for racial discrimination. Your supervisor harasses you. You quit your job. Then, your supervisor files a lawsuit against you for defamation for the racial discrimination claim.
• A job applicant refuses to fire individuals who are over age 65 because of age. He is not given the job.
If you are the victim of workplace retaliation in New York City, you have a time limit to file your lawsuit. The time limit may vary from 300 days to 3 years, depending on the claims. IF it si a discrimination claim that led to retaliation, your claim must be filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) within 300 days of the incident. However, if the claim is related to sexual harassment or whistleblower issues, you have a 3-year time limit to file your retaliation claim.
As a victim of workplace retaliation in New York City, the courts will attempt to award remedies that can help make you whole once again. Some of the relief awarded by the courts include:
• Reinstatement of employment and benefits
• Reimbursement for benefit premiums
• Reimbursement for medical and other related expenses
• Attorney’s fees
• Pain and Suffering
• Back pay
• Future pay
• Review and revamping of policies
• Reassignment or termination of the individual responsible for the retaliation
• Emotional distress
• Punitive damages
Workplace retaliation lawsuits in New York City can take anywhere from 4 to 6 weeks to a year or longer to resolve. If your employer is willing to negotiate a fair and reasonable settlement, the case may be resolved within 4 to 6 weeks. However, if the employer refuses to offer a fair and reasonable settlement or wishes to take the case to trial, the case may take a year or longer to resolve. The trial preparation may take 8 months to a year. Then the trial may take another few days to several weeks until a judgment is entered.
If you are the victim of workplace retaliation, there are a few things you can do immediately as you prepare to file a lawsuit.
1. Contact a workplace retaliation attorney in New York City immediately.
2. Gather evidence as needed. Make sure to document every incident leading up to this point. Take not of what occurred, who was involved, and any witnesses.
3. If you have not been fired, do not quit. This can hurt your case.
4. If you have a policy and procedure relating to retaliation, follow it.
5. Report the retaliation in writing to HR if you are still employed with the company.
6. Do not waste time. You have a limited time to file your lawsuit before your statute of limitations runs out. Do not wait until it is too late.
New York City and Federal governments put laws in place designed to protect employees who want to work and want to do the right thing. No employee should have to experience discrimination or harassment twice because he or she followed the law. If you are the victim of workplace retaliation in New York City, the experienced attorneys at Derek Smith Law Group can help. Contact us today at (212) 587-0760 for a free consultation. We do not collect any money until you win your case.