Silver Spring Employment Discrimination Lawyer
Our office receives hundreds a calls a year specifically inquiring about whether he or she has a case for discrimination. The first element of a discrimination case is that the basis for the discriminatory activity has to be a legally protected. These can include discrimination based on race, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, disability, religion and color. Therefore, if your boss terminated someone because he was very upset that the New York Yankees won the World Series and he fired all Yankee fans from his company; those employees don’t have a legally cognizable discrimination case. No matter how stupid the reason, if it wasn’t legally protected, it’s allowed. The court would not allow that case to go to trial.
There is a critical difference between unfair and illegal. Employees may have other legal bases to bring action against the employer for wrongful termination. For example, an employee may be covered on an employment contract with the company that terminated him or her. The employee may have a whistleblowing case or a retaliation case because the employee complained about discrimination. In that kind of case, the employee doesn’t have to prove the underlying discrimination. He or she must only prove that there was a good faith belief about discrimination when the complaint was brought and that the company retaliated against the employee because of it.
There are federal anti-discrimination laws and a number of states have anti-discrimination state laws. Maryland and the District of Columbia have such laws. A number of Maryland counties have their own County Anti-Discrimination laws.
Generally speaking, an employee or former employee who brings a discrimination case must first exhaust his or her administrative remedies. For example, one who files a Title VII, gender discrimination claim must first file the claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. There are strict deadlines for doing so. No matter how solid the case, if these deadlines are missed, the case loses. Hence, if you believe you have been discriminated at the workplace, you should contact an employment attorney right away to preserve your rights.