Should I Hire an Employment Lawyer?

You should hire an employment lawyer if you face discrimination or other trouble in the workplace because of a trait protected under the law such as disability, race, or sex. Employment law is a complicated and intricate field involving many different statutory and judicial rules. Typically, an employer has substantially more power and resources than its employees. However, hiring a tenacious plaintiff's law firm can make a huge difference in the outcome of your case. In most cases, to fully enforce your rights under federal, state, or city laws that protect you, you should hire an attorney. Issues that come up in employment law include discrimination and harassment based on protected characteristics. If you were subject to discriminatory conduct by your employer, you should retain the seasoned New York City employment discrimination attorneys of Phillips and Associates.

Our tenacious firm has experience going up against large companies in court. We understand you walk into work wanting to be judged on your skills, talents, and performance, and we empathize with how emotionally and financially difficult it is to be treated badly by your employer due to your identity in the face of your work efforts and ambitions. We strategize and fight hard for our clients.

Discrimination Lawsuits

Federal, state, and local laws prohibit employment discrimination in New York City workplaces based on various protected characteristics. The same relief is not available under each law. It can be tricky navigating an employment discrimination lawsuit in any of the available forums. If you face an adverse employment action due to a protected characteristic, an experienced trial attorney can determine which law is likely to yield the greatest relief. Even so, our tenacious firm will pursue damages under all applicable laws to make sure your bases are covered.

Federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination include the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). These are enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). A charge must be filed with the EEOC before you pursue relief under any of these laws. While you can file a charge with the EEOC on your own, it is wiser to retain an attorney who can make sure your rights are protected through this administrative process.

The New York State Human Rights Law also prohibits employment discrimination. It usually provides greater protection than federal law. A broader range of characteristics are protected. Standards for proving harassment are lower. Additionally, it applies to employers that have only one employee.

The New York City Human Rights Law also tends to provide more protection than federal law. It has long been considered one of the most liberal and worker-friendly laws in the country. It also protects a wide range of characteristics.

Legal Representation During Litigation

Employment discrimination litigation can become highly adversarial. Your employer may have a team of attorneys working to make sure you get as little as possible. You may be painted in an unfavorable light by an unscrupulous employer. This is why you should have an experienced attorney by your side.

To recover damages on your behalf, we will need to prove your case under the relevant law. To do this, our lawyers will need to gather evidence from your employer and other relevant parties.

One way in which we may be able to obtain evidence is through depositions. Depositions are proceedings in which a person or representative of an entity must answer questions under oath. In a pregnancy discrimination lawsuit, for example, we would ask your supervisor questions to determine at what point in time he knew you were pregnant and any events leading up to his discriminatory acts. We might also need to depose your coworkers, customers, clients, or managers to get a full picture of what happened and figure out how best to present your case to the court.

In most cases, employers possess personnel files and other information to which an employee has no access. In a lawsuit, however, a skillful lawyer may be able to get access to those records and other information. Discovery requests can be sent to an employer; these are questions that must be answered truthfully under the law.

Should You Hire an Employment Lawyer to Recover Damages?

Numerous rules govern a damages award for employment discrimination. If our lawyers can successfully establish your employer's liability for discrimination, we may be able to recover damages on your behalf. In most cases, the damages awards under state and local law are larger than they would be under federal law even when these laws protect the same characteristic such as race or sex. Depending on the law, you may be able to obtain:

  • Back pay
  • Front pay
  • Out-of-pocket costs
  • Compensatory damages
  • Punitive damages when your employer has acted outrageously.

Punitive damages are awarded to punish and deter the employer. If we can show egregious behavior by your employer, the jury might award a substantial sum. However, it can be an uphill battle to get punitive damages even in those situations that warrant it, unless your case is presented to a defense team, mediator, and the court in a highly persuasive and skilled manner by professionals who have gathered the right evidence and understand how the pertinent laws should be applied.

Retain an Employment Lawyer

If you are facing employment discrimination in New York City, you should protect your rights and seek damages. Discuss what happened to you with the attorneys of Phillips & Associates. We provide free consultations to workers who have been discriminated against in Brooklyn, the Bronx, Manhattan, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County, or Nassau County. Call us at (866) 229-9441 or complete our online form.

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