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Rand L. Stephens & Richard Koss

Workplace Retaliation – What Are My Rights?

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Your rights at work are paramount, and it’s essential to understand the laws in place to protect you from discrimination and unfair treatment. A key weapon against discrimination is protection from retaliation in the workplace for exercising one’s rights. Read on to learn more about your rights as an employee to be free from retaliation. If you have been unlawfully discriminated against or retaliated against at your workplace in the Bay Area, call workplace retaliation attorney Richard Koss for a consultation regarding your specific circumstances.

What Is Workplace Retaliation?

Workplace retaliation is when an employer punishes an employee for participating in legally protected activity, like reporting discrimination or unsafe conditions, or participating in workplace investigations. It can manifest in several forms, including but not limited to, demotion, harassment, negative performance reviews, wage cuts, and job or shift reassignments.

Legal Protection Against Workplace Retaliation

Key laws protect employees against retaliation. For example, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA) prohibit retaliation against workers who assert their rights under the law, including filing employment discrimination complaints. Moreover, several provisions of the California Labor Code protect employees from retaliation for filing wage claims, taking time off to serve on a jury or appear in a court proceeding, and much more. These many federal and state laws provide a robust framework to shield employees from unfair retaliation in California workplaces.

Identifying Workplace Retaliation

Recognizing retaliation can be tricky as it’s often subtle. An employer might not fire an employee outright but may engage in practices to make the employee’s work life more difficult or less satisfying.

For instance, if an employer reassigns an employee to a less desirable position or schedule after they report unsafe work conditions, this could be a form of retaliation. Similarly, if an employee faces frequent unwarranted disciplinary actions or suddenly receives unjustly negative performance reviews after filing a discrimination complaint, it might be a sign of workplace retaliation.

Remedies and Recoverable Damages for Workplace Retaliation

If you believe you’ve been the victim of workplace retaliation, there are remedies available to you. With the guidance of an employment lawyer, you can file a complaint with state or federal agencies or in court.

If your claim is successful, you may be entitled to recover damages, including but not limited to, back pay for lost wages, front pay for future lost wages, reinstatement to your former position, compensation for emotional distress, and, in certain cases, punitive damages.

It’s crucial to remember that time limits apply to these claims, so it’s important to act promptly.

Protecting Your Rights in the Bay Area With Richard Koss

Workplace retaliation can feel overwhelming and unjust. But remember, you are not alone. Richard Koss, a seasoned employment lawyer in the Bay Area, is here to help you navigate these complex waters. With offices conveniently located on the San Francisco Peninsula and in the East Bay, Richard is committed to advocating for employees’ rights and pursuing justice on their behalf.

Understanding your rights and the laws that protect you is the first step toward addressing workplace retaliation. The next step? Reach out to an experienced employment lawyer who can guide you through the legal process and help you stand up against workplace retaliation.

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