Mercer County has the sixth-highest per capita personal income in New Jersey. Notable employers in Mercer County include Princeton University, Princeton Theological Seminary, Rider University, The Institute for Advanced Study, Thomas Edison State University, The College of New Jersey, Mercer County Community College, and Trenton-Mercer Airport. If you have been harmed by discriminatory or harassing conduct at your job, you should consult the experienced Mercer County employment lawyers at Phillips & Associates.Federal and State Employment Laws Protect Employees
If a worker is mistreated in the workplace, he or she may face both economic and emotional harm. Both federal and state laws protect workers in Mercer County and provide rights that can be exercised through litigation. However, these laws can be nuanced and complicated.
In many situations involving employment discrimination, state law is more favorable than federal law to an employee. There is no requirement to file a charge with an enforcement agency before filing a lawsuit in state court under state law. There are no caps on damages if you establish liability for employment discrimination. However, it is wise to consult an experienced attorney about your specific factual situation. It may be possible to sue for damages under the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (NJLAD) or one of the federal anti-discrimination laws such as Title VII or the FMLA. Damages that may be recovered include back pay, front pay, benefits, emotional distress, pain and suffering, and in cases of egregious employer conduct, punitive damages. An employment attorney in Mercer County can help you seek all the appropriate remedies for your harm.The New Jersey Family Leave Act
Another important state employment law that Mercer County employers must follow is the New Jersey Family Leave Act (NJFLA). Whether you have just given birth or you need to care for a loved one with a serious illness, you may be entitled to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave from work under the state law. Employees are eligible for this leave if they work for an employer for one year and for at least 1,000 hours in the last year immediately before the leave, and the employer is a public employer or a private employer with at least 30 employees working for at least 20 weeks during the current or prior year. The leave must be used to care for or bond with a child within a year of their birth or placement for foster care or adoption or to care for a family member or someone who is the equivalent of family who has a significant medical condition.
The 12-week leave does not need to be taken all at once. It can be used in pieces of time, such as for hours, days, or weeks, or intermittently. Your employer is supposed to keep your group health insurance policy and return you to the same or an equivalent job after you take the protected leave. If your employer fails to honor its obligations, a Mercer County employment attorney can help you pursue legal action. Your employer is also not supposed to retaliate against you for exercising your right to take leave. You may be able to sue your employer for damages if you are terminated or if you face discipline because you had to take time off to care for a newborn,a child who has been adopted, or for a family member with a significant medical condition.Protect Your Rights by Retaining an Employment Lawyer
Employment discrimination, harassment, and retaliation can have a substantial negative impact on an employee’s life. Usually, employers have greater resources than do their employees, which means that it may be difficult to hold an employer accountable for misconduct or legal violations on your own. If you believe that you were harmed by a workplace violation, you should discuss your situation with Phillips & Associates. We are skillful and tenacious employment lawyers serving employees in Mercer County. Our firm can be reached at (609) 436-9087 or through our online form.