EMPLOYMENT DISCRIMINATION & HARASSMENT
In harsh economic times, it is often difficult to distinguish between a legitimate business decision (e.g., a “layoff” to cut costs or a firing “for cause”) and a termination motivated by employment discrimination. Over the past several years, we have seen a tremendous increase individuals who have lost jobs at all financial levels under circumstances that are worthy of legal examination.
Most people who lose their jobs are surprised to learn that an employer does not have to give a reason or explain motivation, and quite frankly, does not even have to be “nice” about it. New York is an “at will” State: unless the employee has a contract (union or other), the company can fire him/her for no reason, a good reason, or a bad reason, as long as it is not a “discriminatory” reason. An employer violates the law if any of the following is a motivating factor in the decision to hire, promote or fire: race/color, ethnic background, national origin, religion, disability/handicap, disabling pregnancy, age, gender,refusal of sexual advances, retaliation for exercising a right or the status of the employee as a “whistleblower.”
KLG represents individuals who have been terminated wrongfully in both the State and Federal courts, particularly in Nassau and Suffolk counties. We have litigated extensively before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (Federal) and the New York State Division of Human Rights (State), and have negotiated numerous settlements in those forums. We are well-versed in the nuances of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964; the Civil Rights Act of 1866 (Section 1981); the Equal Pay Act; the Americans with Disabilities Act; the Age Discrimination in Employment Act; the Rehabilitation Act of 1973; the Fair Labor Standards Act; the Occupational Safety and Health Act; the Family and Medical Leave Act; the 2007 Nursing Mothers in the Workplace Act; and New York’s Labor Law and Executive Law.
We advise businesses on “best practices” and policies designed to enhance the workplace and curb lawsuits, and we prepare employee handbooks, non-compete clauses, restrictive covenants and severance agreements. And we litigate cases of libel, slander, assault and battery, false arrest, and any other matter that arises out of or relates to the employment relationship.
If you believe that you are a victim of employment discrimination or you are an employer accused of employment discrimination and need advice and guidance, please contact us for a FREE consultation and legal analysis!