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Retaliation Lawsuits May Be The Employee’s Last Resort

Workers can really be left between the legendary rock and a hard place if they observe unethical or illegal behavior or need to file a legitimate claim or complaint. Most workers, especially in the current economy, are fearful of losing their job. They worry that if they stand up for their rights, the employer will either fire them or do all possible to force the worker to quit.

What Are Retaliation Lawsuits?

Retaliation lawsuits are filed by a worker against an employer who has retaliated against an employee for lawful, protected behavior. Retaliation cases can be very complicated and become much more serious than the discrimination or other event that precipitated the retaliation. Unlawful retaliation can be easier to prove than unlawful discrimination, however.

Under both Texas and federal law, an employer is not allowed to terminate or retaliate against a worker who has participated in a protected activity, including the following:

  • Filing a discrimination lawsuit with the EEOC or being involved in an EEOC or TWC investigation;
  • Complaining about conditions in the workplace, including any form of harassment;
  • Complaining about unpaid overtime to the employer or filing a complaint about unpaid overtime with the U.S. Department of Labor;
  • Being injured at work and filing for Worker’s Comp benefits;
  • Problems concerning maternity or FMLA leave;
  • Reporting an illegal act to authorities;
  • Complying with a subpoena or reporting for jury duty.

A retaliation lawsuit is generally the best recourse a worker has. However, the reason for the employer’s unlawful retaliation must involve a protected activity; if a worker is fired because of personality conflicts, for example, that would not be considered unlawful. When the employer’s alleged retaliation took place is also important. The employee must be able to prove that the employer had knowledge of the protected activity before the retaliation took place.

Texas workers who feel that they have been unfairly discriminated against at work, or that their employer has retaliated against them, should contact The Law Offices of Filteau & Sullivan. This Houston law firm is focused on representing those who have been wrongly treated in the workplace. Retaliation Lawsuits may be the only way to get recompense for workplace injustices. Contact the firm to schedule a free consultation to discuss your situation and the viable options.