How Does The Internal Complaints Process Generally Work? Can I Trust HR?
You cannot necessarily trust Human Resources. The internal procedures vary by company, but generally, bigger companies will have a procedure that brings you up the chain of command first to see if you can resolve things with your immediate supervisor or the person above them. Sometimes, they provide for administrative hearings and then appeals of administrative hearings, which may or may not be handled by the HR department. Typically, the HR department is there to protect the employer, but you still have to follow the internal procedures and hop through those hoops before you can take any legal action.
Is It Advisable To Let People Know That I Have Hired An Attorney For An Employment Law Issue?
You should discuss whether it’s advisable to let people know you’ve hired an attorney with your attorney. Sometimes, it is better to allow your attorney to guide you in the background and not throw gasoline on the fire, so to speak. At other times, it is important to have the attorney send a letter of representation to let the employer know you are being represented. It just depends on each situation and how far along you are in trying to resolve the adverse action.
When Does The EEOC Get Involved In An Employment Law Issue? What Happens From There?
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is a federal agency that takes care of administrative claims with respect to employment discrimination. They provide an informal hearing scenario where you can voice your concern about discriminatory practices, the employer can respond to it, and a hearing officer can make a determination as to whether they believe there has been just cause for you to bring a claim. If they make that type of decision, then you can take the next step to bring a claim, and having gone through that process makes the next step in litigation a little bit easier.
Am I Protected From Workplace Retaliation If I File A Complaint Or A Lawsuit?
An employer cannot take adverse action against you simply because you have brought a lawsuit or some kind of administrative complaint against them. Obviously, the employer will want to tread lightly if they know that you are represented by an attorney and that you are bringing a complaint alleging a discriminatory practice. If an employer were to take a more sever action in retaliation, it would make the case against them worse.
If There Is Retaliation Once A Lawsuit Is Filed, Is It A Part Of The Original Complaint Or Is It Handled As A Separate Issue?
Retaliation is not handled as a separate issue. You can amend the original claim to add any additional retaliatory or adverse action taken by the employer during the course of the lawsuit. The employer would have to justify a legitimate reason for taking the adverse action as opposed to retaliation.
What Is The Statute Of Limitations For Filing A Lawsuit Against An Employer In Florida?
The statute of limitations for filing a lawsuit would depend on whether you have a written contract (which would mean breach of contract) or if the adverse action falls under a civil rights statute.
With respect to an employment discrimination claim under the ADA, an employee must file a charge within 180 days of the discriminatory conduct. Once a right to sue letter has been received from the EEOC, a lawsuit must be filed within 90 days.
The Statutes of Limitations for other employment related claims is more complicated and depends upon a number of factors. Regardless of the nature of your claim, it is always important to consult an attorney as soon as possible.
What Happens If I File A Lawsuit Against A Former Employer?
If you want to file a lawsuit against a former employer, the way you’d go about doing so would depend on whether you left because you were terminated or you voluntarily quit. In a situation where you quit because the environment had become too hostile, you would have to demonstrate that you would not have quit but for the hostile environment and then try to prove what your damages are thereafter. Filing a lawsuit after you’ve already been terminated is much more difficult, unless you were terminated because of the adverse action taken by your employer.
How Long Does The EEOC Have To Resolve A Complaint That Is Filed?
Unfortunately, the EEOC doesn’t have a deadline to resolve a complaint that’s been filed. Oftentimes, it takes a long time to see any resolution.
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