Monday, May 1, 2017

Can it Be Age Discrimination When the Person Who Fired Me Is Older than Me?

Clients have asked me if it possible to have a case of age discrimination, when the person who fired them is older than they are. The answer is, “Yes.” For example, an employee in her 50's may be harassed or terminated because of her age, but the boss who made the termination decision is in his 60's. The persons having the managerial authority as to who to keep and who to let go in termination decisions are frequently older themselves and long-term employees. Just because a person is older, even significantly older by a decade or more, than the terminated employee, it does not constitute an outstanding safeguard employer defense when an employer has to defend on a wrongful termination age discrimination claim.

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Customers’ Racial Preferences Cannot Be a Basis for Discrimination Against Employees

Businesses attempting to maximize their profits by matching employees of Certain races to the racial demographics of their customers will be breaking both New Jersey and Federal Law. If a customer base is predominately white, the employer may not utilize such racial demographics to hire, train, promote, or retain white workers over non-white workers.

By way of example: a commercial business corporation may not assign black employees to work only in the stores that are in black neighborhoods but not predominately white neighborhoods. In assigning accounts to salespersons, a business may not withhold assigning accounts of white-owned businesses or white customers, to African American or other non-white salespersons. This is true even if the customer has blatantly told the business that they do not want a black salesperson.

Read more . . .

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Is it Legal for My Boss to Ask Me When I Can Retire?

While there is no law in New Jersey that specifically prohibits an employer from asking an employee when he/she can retire, this type of questioning could be an indication of the employer’s age bias when coupled with other biased nuances, words or actions. I have represented both private and public employees in age discrimination lawsuits where the plaintiffs were specifically asked that exact question, “How many years until you can retire?” before they were terminated and I was successful in obtaining six figure settlements for these Plaintiffs. 

This kind of questioning in some instances can be part of a larger pattern of age harassment and age bias against an employee, as is alleged in a recent case brought by numerous school teachers in Atlanta in a federal class action lawsuit as reported by FOX news

In this federal class action Atlanta school teachers’ case, what the Plaintiffs’ counsel is presenting as part of the theory of discriminatory evidence, is remarkably similar to facts that were alleged by the plaintiffs in age discrimination cases in which I have successfully represented the employees.

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Monday, April 10, 2017

Employer’s Failure to Investigate Alleged Employee Rule Breaking Leads to $ 4.5 Million Verdict

A recent Federal case in Florida underscores the importance of an employer doing a thorough investigation. In Axel v. Fields Motorcars of Florida, Inc., No. 8:15-cv-893-17JSS (M.

Read more . . .

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Can My Employer Terminate Me Without Cause? My Boss Gave Me No Reason Why I Was Fired

Terminated employees often have come to me when their boss terminated them without giving them any reason as to what they did wrong. When this happens, a detailed inquiry is necessary, going back even several years, to determine if the firing was legal or illegal. 

Generally, when a person has a written employment contract, it may stipulate that the employee can only be fired if they did some Certain act or acts ( such as repeated tardiness, etc.) and if the employee does engage in such act, the employer may terminate the employee “ for cause”. But if the employee does not engage in the acts or otherwise violate the contract provisions that trigger the “for cause” termination, the employee’s job is generally secure, absent some illegal act by employee or other bone fide business justification.

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Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Does My Employer Have to Accommodate My Surrogate Pregnancy? Surrogate Birth Leads to Discrimination Suit

A recent case is testing the limits of pregnancy and sex discrimination laws as a woman who opted to use a surrogate to give birth to twins has filed a discrimination suit against her employer for not allowing her to take time off under its paid maternity leave policy and discrimination based on sex, disability and pregnancy. Under the employer’s policy, women who give birth or adopt children are offered six to eight weeks of paid leave. However, the company required her to use vacation and sick days when her children were born. The Plaintiff in this matter originally  filed the suit in U.S.

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Friday, January 20, 2017

Supreme Court to Decide Whether Arbitration Agreements Can Prohibit Employees from Filing Collective Actions and Whether “Individual Action Only” Clauses Violate the NLRA

On Friday, January 13, 2017, the US Supreme Court agreed to hear arguments over whether the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) is violated when employer arbitration policies prohibit employees from filing class or collective actions. The Court granted cert and consolidated three petitions: Ernst & Young LLP v. Morris, a California case; Epic Systems v. Lewis, an appeal from a District Court for the Western of Wisconsin; and Murphy Oil USA v. National Labor Relations Board, which had been appealed in the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

Read more . . .

Monday, January 9, 2017

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender Harassment More Subtle as Laws Afford Protection

The evolution of discrimination law in New Jersey that protects the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender persons in their places of employment, put employers on notice they could be held liable if they allow discrimination or harassment of LGBT persons. Another evolution in the law that additionally made employers more cognizant, albeit in a more general manner, of the rights of equality for gays and lesbians, was the legalization of same sex marriages. The discrimination of LGBT persons in the workplace has not gone away however; it has just now appears in forms more subtle, as is driven underground in the ranks of management in attempts to evade liability.

The U.S.

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Thursday, December 29, 2016

Can I Be Fired for Being Anorexic, Bulimic or Obese, Underweight or Overweight?

If you are fired or discriminated against at work for being overweight or underweight, whether or not your employer is violating the law depends on whether the employer is applying standards that illegally discriminate against a class of employees that is protected by law, such as based on sex, disability, pregnancy, etc. Persons who are dangerously overweight, i.e., morbidly obese, and those underweight who have anorexia have a disability that gives them a protected status. If you are such a person and are being discriminated against, you should not sit on your rights.

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Saturday, December 24, 2016

Year's End Terminations: Legal Firings or Illegal “Culling the Herd” of Older Workers?

It comes as little surprise to many,  that employers often hand out their pink slips at the end of December. While this may seem to be emotionally the worst time of year to inform workers that they no longer have a job, it does not make it any more illegal than at any other time. It is only significant if employer applies an illegal basis, such as age,  when choosing which employees will be let go and which will remain. Age must be a bona fide occupational qualification for an employer to have a rule mandating retirement at a specified age.

If you are an older employee and the year-end pink slips were disproportionally given to the older workers such as yourself, the employer might be illegally discriminating.

Read more . . .

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Cancer Discrimination Can Take Many Forms: Failure to Accommodate, Denial of Opportunities for Training and Promotions, and Outright Harassment.

Cancer survivors and those in treatment are entitled to reasonable accommodations at their workplace to allow them to remain employed. Cancer survivors and those in treatment should not have to suffer discrimination at work and numerous state and federal laws prohibit discrimination against an employee who had or has cancer, or are perceived as having cancer.

This firm has successfully represented cancer survivors, both private and  public employees. To persons diagnosed with cancer, treating for it, or having survived it and returned to work, don’t give up! The law is on your side for an employer to make reasonable accommodations that will allow you to remain employed. 

Reasonable Accommodations to Remain Employed

An employee who has cancer should request a reasonable accommodation from their employer that will allow them to remain employed if that accommodation is necessary.

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