Most people think that a good legal representative can win you just about any lawsuit. While finding the best auto accident lawyer or immigration lawyer is definitely important, you also need to understand the nature of the claim. Many people file a lawsuit without fully understanding the process.
This is especially true when it comes to workplace lawsuits. There is a fine line between bad behavior and harassment. Sometimes, we tend to mistake one for another, and when we reach the court, it turns out that our claim is much weaker than we initially thought.
Anyway, in this guide, we will discuss the 5 most common workplace lawsuits. Getting acquainted with them is important for both employers and employees. As an employer, you need to understand what is regarded as appropriate behavior. On the other hand, employees should know what acceptable workplace behavior is and how to take legal action if an employer crosses that line.
There is a lot of confusion when it comes to overtime. In most cases, employees and employers create a custom agreement as to how much these hours should be paid. Nevertheless, this area is regulated by the Fair Labor Standards Act. The law regulates numerous aspects of overtime, including the fees paid to non-salary employees and freelancers.
To prevent any issues, employers should create a system that would help them track all employees and their overtime hours. Precision and proper tracking are crucial in this particular case. No matter what, make sure that an employee agrees to the conditions beforehand. If possible, there should be a legal agreement regulating this particular aspect of the business.
2. Personal injury
Employers should do everything in their power to secure the workplace. This is especially important for manufacturing plants and other facilities where injuries are commonplace. If and when these accidents occur, they are usually accredited to employers’ negligence.
Thinking that a personal injury will not occur at your workplace is a bad way of looking at things. In fact, there are a few million personal injuries every year in the US. In most cases, these situations are covered by insurance. Even then, it is employers’ duty to address potential issues when and if they notice them. This is especially true if one of the employees points out a safety hazard and demands that its resolved.
Although it’s 2022, there are still a lot of harassment lawsuits in the US. Sometimes, harassment is hard to detect and could seem benign on the surface. For example, addressing an employee in a slightly improper way can be used as a basis for a legal procedure. There are even more severe cases such as full-out bullying, sexual attack, or physical altercation.
Many employers handle this issue by giving out booklets meant to teach employees as to what is the proper behavior in the work environment. Despite what you might think, it is employers’ responsibility to address these claims as soon as they are brought to them. The last thing you would want is to be passive in such situations.
Similar to harassment, major strides are made toward eliminating discrimination in the workplace. However, it still rears its ugly head from time to time. Discrimination is one of the more common workplace lawsuits, and it can pertain to gender, race, color, age, pregnancy, religion, citizenship, family, etc.
Discrimination lawsuits can vary slightly from state to state. Unless an employer has specifically mentioned gender, race, age, or something like that as the reason for termination, it is sometimes hard to prove that a person is fired for discrimination.
To win such a lawsuit, a person first needs to establish that they’re a member of a specific group and that they’ve provided satisfactory work. After that, they need to prove in the court that there was no real basis for their termination and to connect the termination to their specific group. Simultaneously, an employer has to give a valid reason for the firing.
5. Wrongful termination
Unlike the previous examples, this isn’t an actual reason for a lawsuit. Instead, it is a term we use to refer to various situations, whether they’re direct or indirect, where an employee is getting laid off without a valid reason.
If an employee and employer have a contract, both sides have to stick to this agreement till the bitter end. However, if there is no contract in place and an employee is fired, they need to prove there was no real reason behind this termination.
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