IN EMPLOYMENT–AT-WILL STATES, DISCRIMINATION IS STILL AGAINST THE LAW
In Indiana, because we are an employment-at-will state, an employee may be fired at any time, for any lawful reason – or for no reason at all. (Of course, as an employee, you may quit your job at any time for any reason, or for no reason at all.)
But working in an at-will state does not mean working with no civil rights. Laws exist to ensure that employees are treated safely, that they are not unfairly discriminated against. As employment lawyers, all of us at Ramey & Hailey are here to defend those rights on your behalf.
It isn’t easy. On a national level, from January 2009 through July 2017, researchers from Lex Machina found, 54,810 cases were filed, but only 1% of those cases were settled in favor of the employee!
What can an employee expect in return for winning a discrimination lawsuit against an employer? Possibilities include:
- lost wages and benefits
- forward wages
- pain and suffering
- punitive damages
- attorney fees
“Employment discrimination isn’t always illegal. In fact, you are free to discriminate against people who come in late, people who are unqualified, and people who insist on wearing socks with sandals,” writes Susanne Lucas in careers.com. Illegal employment discrimination is limited to just a handful of things, defined by the Federal Civil Rights Law (known as Title VII), which prohibits employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, gender, national origin, and religion.
As long as your employer makes no employment decisions to:
- provide opportunity to
Your employment based on any protected classifications, that employer is considered to be obeying the law.
Here in the state of Indiana, the default procedure in civil rights cases is an administrative hearing conducted by the Indiana Civil Rights Commission (ICRC) and presided over by an administrative law judge (ALJ). If your Indiana employer fires you:
- for discriminatory reasons
- in violation of an employment contract
- in retaliation for exercising your rights
You may have a legal claim against your employer for wrongful termination.
Your job is important, and safeguarding your employment rights is vital to your success and well-being. The employment law attorneys at Ramey & Hailey work aggressively to protect you. Discrimination in the workplace is simply against the law!