Westchester County Sex Discrimination
Westchester County is home to over 980,000 residents. About 51.6% of its population is female. Employers may not make employment decisions based on the sex of an employee, whether male or female. Sex discrimination is illegal under both federal and state laws. Employers cannot consider an individual’s sex when deciding whether to hire, fire, promote, demote, or provide a bonus, or when they are determining which salary to pay or deciding other terms, conditions, and privileges of employment. If you believe that you are a victim of sex discrimination, you should contact the experienced litigators at Phillips & Associates. Our Westchester County sex discrimination lawyers have successfully handled many of these cases, as well as those involving sexual harassment.Situations Involving Sex Discrimination in the Workplace
Your employer should not treat you unfavorably with regard to terms, conditions, and privileges of employment because you are a woman or because you are a man. It may be sex discrimination, for example, if you have a gender-neutral name like Madison or Lincoln, and you are told that you are the best-qualified job candidate by email, but when you meet with HR, they express surprise that you are a woman and you are not hired. For another example, if you are passed over for promotions, while your boss instead promotes male employees with less experience or who have not performed as well, this may also be sex discrimination. Sexual harassment is also a common form of sex discrimination.
Most people associate sexual discrimination with a male authority figure at work taking an adverse action against a woman. However, sex discrimination can happen when the authority figure and the victim are the same sex. For example, a male CEO could discriminate against a male employee, and a female Vice President of Technology could discriminate against a female employee. Our sex discrimination attorneys can help Westchester County employees take action in any of these situations.Laws Governing Sex Discrimination
Both Title VII and the New York State Human Rights Law prohibit sex discrimination. The state law applies to a broader range of employees because it applies to companies with just four employees. The anti-sexual harassment provision of the state law applies no matter how many employees an employer has. No employer is permitted to sexually harass an employee under the state law. Title VII only applies to employers that have a minimum of 15 employees. There are other differences that have arisen through different interpretations of the laws by the federal and state courts.
Moreover, there are different types of remedies available. Title VII caps compensatory and punitive damages based on the size of the employer. For example, if your employer has 15-100 employees, the cap is $50,000. If your employer has 101-200 employees, the cap is $100,000. In some cases, this cap makes it advisable to seek relief under state law, even if you qualify to seek relief under federal law. On the other hand, punitive damages are not available at all under the state law. Deciding how to proceed is a strategic calculation that should be made by a Westchester County sex discrimination attorney who is well-versed in both federal and state law claims.
Many people are nervous about seeking compensation from an employer for sex discrimination. Most employers are sophisticated these days and hide their bias or know how to dodge questions calculated to determine whether bias or animus was the basis for their decision. Moreover, it is reasonable to be worried about filing an internal complaint or suing your employer. However, complaining about sex discrimination is a protected activity under both federal and state laws. Your employer is not supposed to retaliate against you if you file a claim of sex discrimination in good faith. Retaliation can include any negative action against you by your employer, due to engaging in a protected activity in good faith. In some cases, a court will decide that you were not correct about the discrimination. However, it may still find for you on the issue of retaliation and award damages.Hire an Experienced Sex Discrimination Lawyer in Westchester County
At Phillips & Associates, our attorneys help clients who have faced sex discrimination and other forms of discrimination, such as pregnancy discrimination, in Westchester County. Feel free to contact us at (212) 248-7431 or through our online form for a free consultation. We represent people in Yonkers, Mount Vernon, New Rochelle, and White Plains.