April 18, 2023
Retaliation in the workplace occurs when an employer takes adverse action against an employee for engaging in a protected activity. Protected activities include reporting discrimination, harassment, or illegal conduct in the workplace, filing a complaint, or participating in an investigation. Retaliation can take many forms, and it can include termination, demotion, pay reduction, or unfavorable job duties changes.
Employers are prohibited by law from retaliating against employees for engaging in these protected activities. However, if you believe you have been retaliated against, you have legal options to protect your rights.
What to do?
The first step is to document the adverse action and any communication that led to it. This can include emails, memos, or witness statements. It would be best if you also made a note of any changes in your work environment, such as a sudden shift in job duties or a negative performance review.
Next, you should report the retaliation to your employer’s HR department or a supervisor. Suppose your employer does not take action to address the retaliation. In that case, you may need to file a complaint with either the EEOC (Equal Employment Opportunity Commission) or the DFEH (California Department of Fair Employment and Housing).
Getting legal help
An experienced employment lawyer can help guide you through filing a retaliation claim. They will help you understand your rights, gather evidence to support your claim, and negotiate with your employer to resolve.
If necessary, your lawyer can also represent you in court. Retaliation claims can be complex, so it is essential to have a skilled attorney who understands the law and how to advocate for your rights effectively.
If you believe you have been retaliated against in the workplace, acting quickly to protect your legal rights is important. But first, contact an experienced employment lawyer to discuss your options and develop a plan to move forward.