Employment law covers a range of issues relating to the employer-employee relationship. State and federal employment laws provide protections for employees, which means that you have recourse if your rights are violated.
It can be intimidating to stand up to your employer; you may fear retaliation or termination and may be hesitant to take action. However, when you hold a company accountable for unfair employment practices, you are sending an important message and possibly preventing others from becoming victims. With employment law attorney, James H. Shoemaker, on your side, you will have the help and support you need to fight for justice and compensation.
Common Employment Law Violations
When you enter into employment, you do so with the expectation of mutual respect. You agree to fulfill certain expectations via your time and efforts and to treat the position and your employer with respect. In exchange, you expect to be treated fairly and respectfully by your employer. Unfortunately, some employers fail to see employees as human beings with rights and dignity. As a result, the following workplace violations may occur:
- Wage and Hour Violations – If your employer tampers with your timesheet, does not pay your agreed-upon wage, or pays less than minimum wage, you have grounds for legal action.
- Overtime Violations – If you are a non-exempt employee and your employer asks you to work more than 40 hours in a week, you are entitled to a wage of time and a half for any hours worked beyond the 40-hour week. Employers use various tactics to try to avoid paying the higher wage, and they can be held accountable.
- Discrimination – Employment discrimination law prohibits unfair treatment based on race, gender, sexual orientation, pregnancy, disability, or age.
- Sexual Misconduct - Sexual harassment and sexual assault in the workplace are illegal under employment law. You do not have to tolerate sexual advances, jokes, or threats.
- Contract Violations – Employment contracts can be confusing, and you may mistakenly agree to unfair terms. Workplace contracts can involve non-compete agreements, severance terms, and restrictive covenants.
- Employer Retaliation – Your employer may attempt to punish you for reporting unfair practices like discrimination or sexual harassment. Pay cuts, demotion, harassment, and termination are common forms of retaliation.
- Wrongful Termination – Employers can legally fire you for many reasons, but they cannot fire you for reasons prohibited by law. For instance, you cannot be fired for invoking an employee right, such as filing a workers’ compensation claim or reporting sexual harassment, nor can you be fired due to your age, race, gender, or sexual orientation.
What Should I do if my Employment Rights are Violated?
Since employment law encompasses a wide range of violations, the right action for you to take will depend on your unique situation. When you discuss your case with Mr. Shoemaker, he will help you determine the best course of action.
One action you can take regardless of the type of violation is to keep a record of events. Document the incident or incidents, including who was involved, when and where it occurred, if you reported it to human resources or management, and any retaliatory actions your employer takes.
Particularly if you fear retaliation or are unsure of how to handle the situation, call Mr. Shoemaker right away. He can help you navigate the process of reporting a violation and pursuing legal action.
Mr. Shoemaker serves clients in Virginia Beach, Hampton Roads, Washington, D.C., and throughout the U.S. Call 757-223-4580 to schedule a consultation.