Whether you are applying for a job, pursuing a promotion, or going through layoffs at work, you trust that you will be judged on your performance, as well as the merits of your work and qualifications. Unfortunately, this is not always true. Employers in Miami-Dade County sometimes base their decisions on an employee’s immutable traits, such as race, religion, age, pregnancy, or gender. This can have significant economic and emotional consequences for an employee. You should consult the Miami employment discrimination lawyers at Phillips & Associates if you believe that you may have a claim of discrimination.Employment Discrimination
Federal laws prohibit discrimination based on color, race, religion, national origin, gender/sex, disability, age over 40, as well as sexual harassment. . Many federal anti-discrimination laws apply to Florida employers with at least 15 employees, which leaves employees of small companies unprotected. The age discrimination law applies only to employers that have a minimum of 20 employees.The Florida Civil Rights Act of 1992
In Florida, companies with 15 or more employees are also subject to the state's anti-discrimination law. Florida state law (the FCRA) provides that it is illegal for an employer to refuse to hire or to alter their terms, conditions, or privileges of employment, due to that person’s race, color, religion, national origin, sex, disability (handicap), marital status, age, sickle cell trait, or handicap status, including AIDS. There is no prohibition based on gender identity or sexual orientation under state law. Title VII case law is used to interpret the Florida Civil Rights Act because the state law is modeled after the federal law. Our employment discrimination attorneys can help Miami residents assert their rights under either law.Handicap Discrimination
Regarding handicap discrimination, the Florida Civil Rights Act (FCRA) is supposed to be construed in accordance with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Florida law does not define what a handicap is, so the ADA’s definition is used. A disability is a mental or physical impairment that significantly restricts one or more major life activities of an individual, a record of that impairment, or a perception of having that impairment. Major life activities can include taking care of yourself, learning, working, performing manual tasks, seeing, walking, hearing, breathing, and speaking.
Under the ADA, a qualified individual is someone with a disability who can do the essential job functions with or without a reasonable accommodation. When someone with a disability can do the essential job functions with a reasonable accommodation, the employer must provide the accommodation unless to do so would result in an undue hardship for the employer. Our Miami employment discrimination attorneys can help employees pursue reasonable accommodations. Reasonable accommodations might include a modified work schedule, job restructuring, reassignment, and an additional unpaid leave.Section 11A-26 in Miami-Dade County
Under an ordinance entitled Section 11A-26, it is illegal for an employer to engage in certain employment practices based on an employee’s color, race, ancestry, national origin, religion, pregnancy, sex, age, disability, marital status, familial status, gender expression, gender identity, sexual orientation, or perceived or actual status as a victim of domestic violence, dating violence, or stalking. Practices that are prohibited include failing to hire, discrimination, and printing or causing to be printed or circulated an ad or publication that suggests that any of these groups is preferred or restricted. It is also illegal to refuse to provide a reasonable accommodation to a disabled individual, unless providing the accommodation would present an undue hardship.Retain an Experienced Miami Attorney
If you were harmed by employment discrimination at a workplace in Miami-Dade County, you should consult a seasoned employment discrimination lawyer at our Miami office. To schedule a free consultation, contact Phillips & Associates by calling (305) 549-5120 or completing our online form. We represent clients on a contingency fee basis, which means that we do not ask for fees unless we successfully secure a settlement or verdict for a client.