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Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Can I Prove My NJ Employer’s Fake Job Elimination, When My Employer Says My Job Is Being Eliminated in a Restructuring?

Terminated employees or employees who were put on notice that their job position was soon to be eliminated, have come to me in a quandary when they suspect their job was not really eliminated. All too frequently, their instincts prove correct - it was a fake job elimination. Attorneys must employ several legal strategies to uncover the economic reality of a so-called “job elimination”. An attorney’s investigative skills doing the discovery phase of a lawsuit include serving Interrogatories (questions requiring written sworn answers) on the employer, Plaintiff’s Demand for Documents on Defendant, and the taking of sworn Depositions of supervisors and witnesses in the presence of a Court Reporter who provides Official Transcripts of the Depositions to be used at trial.

Depending on the facts, it may be necessary to hire a forensic accountant to conduct an examination of the records produced by the employer and an analysis into the finances of the public entity or business. Sometimes, management will simply slap a new title on the same job description. However, employers have become savvy as to discrimination lawsuits and may go to elaborate lengths in developing ruses in an attempt to avoid a charge of discrimination.

Doing the course of litigation, the Answers to Interrogatories and Testimony of other past and current co-workers during their Depositions may reveal a bias of the employer against certain classes of people. Among the more sophisticated employers, management might devise more complex maneuvers when they want to change the workforce demographics for illegal purposes, such as getting rid of older, disabled, or non-white workers by terminating all the employees and telling all the workers that they will have to reapply for a position and only the most qualified will be hired. The employer’s offered explanation for this may be that it is an efficient cost-cutting restructuring.

I have represented claimants in these kinds of complex scenarios against both public and private employers and been successful in recovering monetary compensation for these workers against both public and private employers.

In the discovery phase of litigation, a plaintiff is entitled to extensive discovery from the employer. Relevant employer records may include emails, employee files, records relating to monetary compensation of all terminated and all re-hired employees, which include not only payroll records, but also how much the employer pays out annually as to all medical and dental insurance, contributions to retirement accounts, etc., as to each employee - both those retained and those let go. Litigants in a lawsuit have a legal obligation to provide relevant records, be it a private employer or a township, etc., or else risk being sanctioned by the Court. A forensic accountant who is approved by the Court can ascertain if the so-called restructuring resulted in its being a cost-saving measure. I have proven that the excuse given for the elimination of certain workers was a pretext for discrimination when the employer either did not save money by the “restructuring”, or actually paid more in total including benefits, etc., to employees after the “cost-cutting restructuring”.

If your employer used the term “job elimination” when they fired you or informed you they are doing a restructuring, it could be for a legal bonafide business purpose under the business judgment rule. But depending on the totality of the circumstances, it might be a pretext for illegal discrimination.

Don’t Sit on Your Rights!

If you are thinking of simply resigning, you should contact an attorney experienced in employment law before you do so, to explore your legal options in the safest way for you.

What You Can Do

I am an aggressive and compassionate employment law attorney who is experienced in successfully representing employees who were subjected to illegal discrimination. If you have experienced discrimination at work, are thinking of resigning, think you will be fired or have been fired, it is important that you immediately consult with an attorney who is experienced in employment discrimination. Don’t sit on your rights, or you may lose your right to file a lawsuit.

If you think you are being subjected to workplace discrimination, contact Hope A. Lang, Attorney at Law today for a free consultation.

Hope A. Lang, Attorney at Law serves clients throughout New Jersey, including Bergen, Middlesex, Essex, Hudson, Monmouth, Ocean, Union, Camden, Passaic, and Morris Counties with locations in southern, central, western and northern NJ to meet with clients.


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