Phillips & Associates

Westchester County Retaliation

Workplace Rights Lawyers Advocating for Employees in Westchester County

White Plains is the county seat of Westchester County. The county is home to many Fortune 500 companies, including MasterCard, IBM, Jarden, Regeneron, and PepsiCo. It is understandable to be concerned that your employer will try to punish you if you complain about discrimination or harassment on the job. Often, employers do punish workers for speaking out against discrimination or harassment, instead of correcting the behavior of the perpetrators. If your employer engages in retaliation rather than correcting the perpetrators' conduct, you may be able to recover damages. At Phillips & Associates, our Westchester County retaliation lawyers may be able to represent you in a lawsuit if you have been a victim of retaliation.

Understanding Situations Involving Retaliation

An employer retaliates against a worker when it takes an adverse employment action against them for complaining about discrimination or harassment based on a protected characteristic. Protected characteristics under federal laws (such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)) include race, color, sex, national origin, religion, disability, pregnancy, and age over 40.

Under the New York State Human Rights Law, meanwhile, it is illegal for your employer to discriminate against you due to your creed, age, color, race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, marital status, military status, domestic violence victim status, criminal or arrest record, predisposing genetic characteristics, or disabilities.

In order for a retaliation attorney in Westchester County to recover damages, the action that is considered retaliatory needs to be substantially adverse and likely to convince a worker not to support or bring a discrimination charge. A retaliatory action could include termination, demotion, harassment, reassignment to a less favorable position, and other actions that are punitive enough that a reasonable person would be less likely to complain about discrimination because of them.

Sometimes a court will dismiss a discrimination claim. Does that mean that your retaliation claim will also fail? No. To prove retaliation, your Westchester County retaliation attorney will need to show that you were involved in a protected activity, and because of your involvement, your employer made an adverse employment decision. In other words, we will need to show that but for your engagement in a protected activity, the adverse action would not have occurred. Sometimes, a court determines that there was no discrimination or harassment under the nuances of case law or the statute that is being applied, but there can still be retaliation as long as you complained about the discrimination or harassment in good faith.

Suppose, for example, if you are black, and a coworker sends you a series of memes depicting monkeys and repeatedly tells you that you would not have gotten your job except for affirmative action. Maybe you would file a grievance with HR, but HR then might decide to shift you into a less favorable assignment with less pay. Your manager might write you a negative performance review saying that you are not a team player because you complain about your coworkers, after you have previously gotten good performance reviews. Eventually, you are terminated. Even if the court determines that what you initially experienced was not racial harassment, you may still be able to recover damages for your employer's retaliatory actions as long as you reasonably believed that the initial actions were harassment.

Employers have gotten savvier about anti-discrimination laws and may claim that there was some other reason for taking an adverse action against you. Sometimes the temporal closeness of your complaint to the retaliatory action can help establish the causal relationship. An experienced employment litigator can help investigate your case, determine whether federal or state law is more favorable, and present your claims to a jury.

Discuss Your Case with a Retaliation Lawyer in the Westchester County Area

At Phillips & Associates, our experienced attorneys help clients who have faced retaliation on the job in Westchester County. If you believe that you have been a victim of retaliation, you can contact us at (212) 248-7431 or through our online form to set up a free case evaluation. We represent people in Yonkers, Mount Vernon, New Rochelle, and White Plains.

Client Reviews
★★★★★
Phillips & Associates did a wonderful job. I would recommend Brittany Stevens. Angel
★★★★★
Employment dispute I had a dispute with my former employer, Jesse Weinstein was patient and thorough with my case. He covered every angle and was able to help me with my dispute. I would recommend Jesse Weinstein and Phillips and Associates in the future to anyone. Margaret
★★★★★
I called at Phillips & Associates seeking for a consultation and I was very pleased with the conversation I had with Eugenio Benvenuto. He was able to answer my questions thoroughly and gave me reassurance. I highly recommend their practice. Giulia
★★★★★
Hands down the best law firm for labor disputes in NYC. Being in the restaurant industry for more than 30 years I can say that this law firm is the number one choice for workers in the restaurant business that need to sue their company for wrongful termination. A special compliment to my lawyer Brittany Stevens. An amazing person and well prepared experienced lawyer. She was professional and empathetic to my case and worked in a time appropriate manner. She never miss a phone call at any hour of the day.The other associates that assisted Brittany were Yusha Hiraman, Eugenio Benvenuto and Katerina Housos. They were all professional and answered any questions or concerns that I had. Brittany and her team helped me with what I needed, when I needed it. I want to thank them all (especially Brittany), for a job well done. Massimo
★★★★★
Jesse Weinstein handled my discrimination case. He was extremely patient and understanding throughout the process and remained professional and consistent even when I could not. I really felt like he had my back and I didn't have to worry. His expertise, combined with the experience of the Firm, resulted in the best possible outcome of my case. Although I wouldn't wish what I went through on anyone, things do and always will happen and I would highly recommend Jesse and this Firm to anyone facing discrimination or other workplace issues. Karen