The term “employment law” is intentionally broad, given that the relationship between an employee and an employer covers such a wide range of issues. From fair compensation to illegal discrimination, these relationships can swing from positive to negative quickly.
Whether you are the victim of discrimination or dealing with issues like wage theft, you have legal rights as an employee. Sometimes, enforcing those rights is easier said than done. Without legal counsel, you could miss out on your chance to seek compensation following unlawful treatment at your workplace.
Your Lawyer Can Help You with Your Employment Law Case
If you are facing challenges at work, a Melbourne, FL lawyer taking employment cases might be able to help. You have rights as an employee, and if those rights are violated you might be entitled to compensation. Our firm looks forward to serving as your advocate as you fight for these rights.
Things we can do for your case:
- Analyze your situation to determine your options
- Tell you about your rights as an employee in Florida
- Stand with you in court, if we need to
- Interview parties that could provide support to your case
- Search for supporting evidence
- And more
To consult with an experienced employment lawyer serving Melbourne, call 855-686-6752
One aspect of employment law that has recently come into focus nationally is the misclassification of employees and independent contractors. This was spurred in part by efforts to reclassify workers as gig workers, which is common among rideshare companies.
The difference between classifying as an employee or an independent contractor is immense. Independent contractors do not enjoy the same protections or benefits as employees. If an independent contractor is hurt on the job, they do not have the workers’ compensation system to rely on.
Earned benefits are often central to disputes over misclassification. While employees enjoy perks like health insurance coverage, 401k contributions, or unemployment insurance, independent contractors go without. Given how much less these contractors cost businesses compared to employees, many business owners wrongfully categorize employees as contractors to save money.
Melbourne Employment Lawyer Near Me 855-686-6752
Wage theft is a serious issue for employees across Florida. Florida and the federal government have minimum wage laws that require employers to pay a minimum hourly wage for the time an employee works. The failure to do so is known as wage theft.
Wage theft occurs in many ways. It is often more subtle than simply not paying an employee for the hours they work. Often, wage theft comes in the form of pushing employees to work while off the clock. This could involve working through breaks or continuing to work after clocking out.
Wage theft could also involve the misappropriation of overtime hours. Hourly employees that work more than the standard 40-hour week are entitled to additional pay. Wage theft often involves paying for these extra hours at the standard rate.
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Discrimination is a common basis for employment law litigation. Numerous grounds could result in a viable claim of discrimination, including:
Federal law bars employers from discriminating against employees based on their age in some cases. These protections only apply to workers over the age of 40. Age discrimination could involve the denial of a promotion or employment opportunity based on a person’s age, even though they could perform the job in question.
Family Leave Discrimination
Federal law also protects parents from discrimination based on pregnancy or for taking maternity leave. Employees are guaranteed a certain amount of medical leave for each pregnancy, and any discrimination based on the use of this leave is illegal.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prevents discrimination against individuals with certain disabilities. This type of discrimination could involve the refusal to make necessary accommodations for individuals with disabilities.
Employment discrimination is the general term for discrimination based on a legally protected class. Often, these claims involve the failure to hire a person based on these protected classes.
Protected classes include a person’s:
- Nation of origin
- Skin color
However, this type of discrimination claim could also relate to disciplinary actions or passing over an employee for a promotion. Your Melbourne, FL employment lawyer could help if you suffered such a situation.
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Sexual harassment can take many forms, including:
Hostile Work Environment
A workplace is considered a hostile work environment when a culture of sexual harassment permeates the business. This could involve:
- Patterns of unwanted touching
- Sexual innuendo
- Offensive jokes
- The display of pornographic material
Quid Pro Quo
Some sexual harassment claims stem from attempts at a quid pro quo relationship. Quid pro quo means “something for something.” In this context, it often means a solicitation of sexual favors in exchange for a promotion or other workplace benefit.
Ultimately, any unwelcome sexual advance could lead to a sexual harassment claim. For that reason, it is not uncommon for those accused of harassment to allege their behavior was welcomed or even consensual. Because of this defense, it is best to register an objection to this behavior and report instances to a supervisor right away.
Wrongful termination is a common issue in Florida and throughout the country. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) wrongfully terminates thousands of claims a year.
Wrongful termination is often related to many of the forms of discrimination discussed previously. Ultimately, a termination is wrongful if the firing was based on discrimination regarding one of these protected classes. Wrongful termination is not always focused on discrimination, however. It is also unlawful to fire whistleblowers.
Fired for Retaliation
If you were fired as retaliation for reporting unsafe working conditions to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), you could have a wrongful termination cause of action. Terminating employment for someone that has made internal reports of discrimination or wrongdoing could also be considered wrongful termination.
That said, Florida is considered an “at-will” state for employment law purposes. This means that businesses have wide latitude to fire employees who are not under contract. For most workers, there is no recourse when they are let go without cause under state law.
Discuss Your Workplace Issues with an Employment Lawyer in Melbourne
The attorneys of Bogin, Munns & Munns stand ready to serve as your advocate during any workplace dispute. If you are prepared to pursue your rights and seek the compensation you deserve, an employment lawyer serving Melbourne, Florida workers is ready to help.
Contact our firm today to discuss your case.