Workplace
Retaliation

We are highly experienced and knowledgeable
in handling workplace retaliation cases.

If you believe that you are the focus of workplace retaliation, the law firm of Bracken Lamberton is here to help you protect your rights and get the justice you deserve. 

Workplace retaliation occurs when your employer retaliates against you for trying to protect yourself from unfair treatment or discrimination when you file an internal complaint with your company or an external third-party organization. You may be entitled to and deserve compensation when your employer or supervisor begins treating you unfairly because of your decision to protect yourself and report illegal conduct. There are laws that protect you from this type of unfair behavior. 

At Bracken Lamberton, we are highly experienced and knowledgeable in handling workplace retaliation cases. Even though these cases may be difficult to prove, we will listen to your story and provide the legal guidance needed so that your rights are protected, and you receive the compensation you rightfully deserve.

Understanding Workplace Retaliation 

Federal and state laws in Pennsylvania give you many employment rights that protect you. You are given the right to be properly compensated for the work you do, to work in an environment that is free and absent harassment and discrimination, and much more. Unfortunately, your employers may punish you or retaliate against you in some instances because you exercised your lawful right. Understanding workplace retaliation will help you identify such illegal actions and take appropriate actions to protect your rights.

What is workplace retaliation?

Employer retaliation may take many different forms, and it is not always easy to identify. Generally, any unfair action that is taken against because you tried to protect yourself or your legal rights is considered workplace retaliation and may include:

  • Wrongful termination, also called wrongful firing or wrongful discharge
  • Less favorable work hours
  • Reduced work hours
  • Decreased pay
  • Reassignment to a less favorable location 
  • Disciplinary actions
  • Critical or intensive forms of supervision 
  • Transfer
  • Demotion
  • Assignment of more difficult duties or tasks
  • Revocation of privileges you once enjoyed
  • Consistent demands to increase production
  • Any other type of retaliation 

Your employer may take any of these actions or a combination of more than one when retaliating against you. However, the most common acts of workplace retaliation include the following:

Wrongful Termination

Retaliating against an employee by firing them is one of the most common and obvious workplace retaliation forms. Many states have adopted “at-will” employment laws, which make it legal for an employer to terminate the employment of their employees at will – for any reason or no reason at all. Such laws, however, do not grant an employer the right to end your employment through retaliation or discrimination. Such a retaliatory termination may arise after you have reported a safety violation to a government entity or agency such as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) or after filing a harassment or discrimination complaint or claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

If you are fired by your employer as a form of punishment for protecting your rights, that is considered unlawful retaliation. Wrongful firing may have devastating consequences for you. Losing your job, especially unfairly and unlawfully, may damage your reputation, make it difficult to find another job, and also put you and your family into financial hardship. Fortunately, as a wrongfully fired employee, you have rights that protect you against workplace retaliation. 

At Bracken Lamberton, we can help you fight your wrongful termination. We can assist you in pursuing a claim against your employer and by obtaining justice for the pain and damages you may have suffered. 

Docking Pay

Any actions taken by your employer that adversely impact your pay when such action is used as a punishment is a form of workplace retaliation. Such unlawful retaliation may include demoting you to a position that pays less, reducing your wages, or giving you fewer hours to work, so you make less money. Docking your pay because you chose to file an internal or external complaint to protect your rights qualifies as retaliation. No matter if your complaint was found to have merit or not when your employer takes actions that adversely impact your paycheck because you “blew the whistle” on them, that is retaliation. 

Limited Opportunities 

Workplace retaliation is not always wrongful termination or loss of pay. Some forms of employer retaliation are more subtle and not as obvert or easy to identifiable. Nevertheless, these minor changes to the work environment and the terms of employment can have a significant impact on you. Such subtle retaliation may include isolating you by excluding you for staffing meetings or company functions. It may also be the failure to give you opportunities for promotion or limiting your career advancement in other ways. If you begin to suddenly run into closed doors after filing an internal or third-party complaint against your employer, you may be the target of workplace retaliation. 

How am I protected against workplace retaliation?

In addition to any specific policies that your employer may have against retaliation, there are also federal and states laws that make it unlawful for an employer to retaliate against you when you:

  • Reasonably exercise your lawful rights
  • Report to the proper jurisdiction any suspected violation committed by your employer
  • Participating in a court proceeding as either a witness or plaintiff

Many different federal and state laws make workplace retaliation illegal, include:

Whistleblower Protection act – a federal law that protects you when reporting your employer’s legal actions.

Americans with Disabilities Act – a federal law that protects against retaliation that comes about as the result of a known or perceived disability or when your employer refuses to make reasonable accommodation for your disability.

Age Discrimination in Employment Act – a federal law that protects you against retaliation if you complain about your employer harassing or discriminating against you because of your age.

Occupation Safety and Health Act – a federal law that protects you from retaliation if you report a workplace safety or health violation. 

Numerous other laws may provide additional protection to you if you are the target of workplace retaliation. 

If you are seeking legal experts to assist you with your workplace retaliation case, we encourage you to contact Bracken Lamberton. Our team of passionate legal professionals will listen to your story, answer any questions you may have, and provide you with our legal analysis of your situation. If you have a case of employer retaliation, we will provide guidance and legal services to protect your rights and obtain any compensation to which you are rightful entitled. 

Contact us for a free consultation

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