There are many ways in which employees may be discriminated against and, despite being illegal, discrimination does, at times, unfortunately occur. In an employment context, discrimination can often be seen when an employer fires someone, refuses to hire or promote them, or harasses them because of some protected personal characteristic about them. Whether you are applying for a position, have been established within your role for some time, or have had a new situations arise which prompted an unfair response, you do have recourse in cases of discrimination. Discrimination may also have played a part in a wrongful termination. There are also cases in which you, as an employer, may be accused of discrimination despite being innocent of any violations of the law or another’s rights. Whether you have been the victim of discrimination or have been accused of such, a Portland employment law attorney can help.
Discrimination can take many forms. Some of the more common ways in which it can manifest in the workplace include:
- Pregnancy discrimination
- Disability discrimination
- Age discrimination
- Sexual orientation discrimination
- Religious discrimination
- Race discrimination
- National origin discrimination
- Sex discrimination
- Discrimination under ERISA or employee benefit plans
- Discrimination or retaliation against whistleblowers
- Discrimination or retaliation against employees who engage in conduct protected by public policy
Most of these types of discrimination are prohibited both by federal and state employment laws. Some, however – like discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, marital status, or status as victim of domestic violence – are only protected by state law in Oregon. In addition, the state of Oregon sometimes also provides greater coverage against employee discrimination. For example, while federal law prohibits age discrimination above the age of 40, Oregon prohibits such discrimination over the age of 18. In addition, federal antidiscrimination laws only apply to businesses with a certain minimum number of employees (anywhere from 4 to 20, depending on the law); by contrast, Oregon’s state antidiscrimination laws apply to any business that has one or more employee.
Both the federal government and the state of Oregon have their respective agency mechanisms to help enforce federal and state employment discrimination laws. The federal government’s Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Oregon’s Civil Rights Division of the Bureau of Labor and Industries both hear and can investigate instances of employment discrimination. When pursuing or defending against an employment discrimination complaint within these agencies – or in court – it is essential to have an experienced attorney to help navigate you through the proper procedures. Our attorneys have both the skill and the dedication to help protect your rights in an employment discrimination dispute.
Employment Lawyer in Portland, Oregon
As discrimination cases can have a lot to do with perception, it takes experienced legal counsel to address the part this factor plays while also working with the facts of the case and the nuances of the relevant law. At HKM Employment Attorneys, our ability to skillfully manage all three in developing your case and navigating it toward a successful conclusion has led to an impressive record of success. Along with quality legal representation, we also offer the service, responsiveness, and low overhead of a boutique litigation firm.
Contact a Portland employment lawyer if you have been the victim of, or have been accused of, any type of workplace discrimination.