Retaliation in Employment

It is illegal for companies to retaliate against workers who file a complaint regarding their employer’s alleged unlawful policies.

It is illegal under federal law and under state law for an employer to retaliate against an employee that reports or otherwise opposes unlawful activity. Both federal and state laws prohibit the employer from firing an employee for engaging in activities protected by law or for reporting violations made by the employer. 

Retaliation in the workplace is any form of adverse action that an employer takes against an employee because the employee engaged in a protected activity. Retaliation against an employee occurs when the employer takes adverse action against the employee.

These actions include:

  • continued harassment
  • an unfavorable evaluation
  • disciplinary action
  • termination
  • demotion

Since 1964, the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act has protected employees from retaliation under federal law. Employers may not retaliate by firing or harassing an employee for exercising his or her employment rights. 

Employees are protected from retaliation by employers for actions such as:

  • Making a federal or state discrimination claim
  • Cooperating with authorities in an investigation of the employer
  • Filing for unemployment or workers’ compensation benefits
  • For joining or forming a union, or participating in union activities
  • Refusing to participate in illegal activity

For a retaliation claim to be proved or disproved, specific evidence must be gathered. There are also strict time requirements relating to a claim for retaliation specified by the law. The team of retaliation lawyers at The Muhlstock Law Firm offers legal advice and services to employees who believe they have been retaliated against at work.

You may be entitled to recover:

  • Back pay
  • Front pay
  • Emotional distress damages
  • Punitive damages in the case of truly egregious violations of the law

Also, the law doesn’t only protect the person who filed the complaint, but it also protects anyone who participates in any investigation that arose from the complaint.  This means that employees who are interviewed regarding a complaint cannot be retaliated against for participating in the investigation.

If you believe you have been the victim of unlawful treatment in the workplace, our office can provide the information and guidance you need to do something about it.  We will fight diligently to hold your employer liable for their misconduct and secure appropriate compensation for your suffering.  Persons who win their retaliation cases are eligible to collect economic losses.  This means wages that would have been paid had the worker not been fired or demoted or had their hours cut.  In some cases, a person is also eligible to collect compensation for pain and suffering as well as attorney’s fees and costs.  In rare instances, retaliation cases result in punitive damages for the client.  These types of damages are more difficult to prove and must show that the employer acted with oppression, fraud, or malice.  Ask your retaliation lawyer what damages apply to your situation.

Request A Consultation

Law is a very complicated matter. Preparation plays a crucial role. Let us help you!