Areas of Practice - New Jersey Employment Litigation Lawyers

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New Jersey Employment Litigation Areas of Practice

The employment litigation attorneys at Sattiraju Law Firm, PC have extensive experience working in various practice areas. These practice areas include the following:

Workplace Discrimination

Under state and federal law, it is unlawful for an employer to treat an employee differently because of the employee’s age, disability, gender, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, race, color, ancestry, nationality, national origin, religion, marital status, civil union status, domestic partnership status, or military service.

Discrimination in the workplace occurs when the employer takes an adverse employment action because of someone’s legally protected characteristic. An adverse employment action can include many actions by the employer including, but not limited to, hiring, firing, promotion, demotion, changes in assignment and relocation.

Please call the Sattiraju Law Firm, PC if you are being discriminated against in your employment.

Age discrimination

Age Discrimination is an increasingly common form of discrimination. Employers frequently seek to reduce the size of their workforces to increase profits and efficiencies. Older employees are also selected in reductions in force because they are the most highly compensated employees. There is a misconception that younger employees are more driven and have less personal commitments. Examples of these ageist comments including calling younger employees being “fresh blood” or having “new ideas.” Discriminatory employees refer to older employees as being “outdated” or not “adapting to changed circumstances.” High-level corporate documents, such as succession plans, explicitly note ages and speculate whether it is worthwhile to promote older workers.
Age discrimination can be very painful because it is more difficult for older workers to find comparable employment. If you are subject to age discrimination, the Sattiraju Law Firm, PC can help you.

Pregnancy discrimination

Employers often regrettably attempt to fire pregnant employees. Pregnancy discrimination can be best proven through a simple timeline. Victims of pregnancy discrimination are often told that they are not doing a good job after announcing her pregnancy, after having no prior performance issues.

Disability discrimination

Employees with disabilities are frequently discriminated against because they require legally protected accommodations and/or leaves of absence. Employers often perceive accommodations and leaves of absence as disruptive to business and costly. Disability discrimination often occurs because of a misconception that employees who become disabled can no longer do their jobs.
Employees should understand that the term disability includes physical, mental and emotional disabilities, or even the perception that an employee is disabled.

Race and National Origin Discrimination

Our firm has achieved outstanding results representing victims of overt discrimination wherein racial slurs are used in the workplace. However, race and national origin discrimination is rarely overt in the workplace, and employers and supervisors often mask their discriminatory motives. Race discrimination is often more indirect and subtler, and involves promotional, demotion, compensation or termination decisions.

Even without direct evidence, circumstantial evidence is enough by itself to prove discrimination, such as inconsistent or untrue reasons for termination.

National origin discrimination cases generally involve discrimination against immigrants. However, Americans are also subject to discrimination by companies based in foreign countries that do not have anti-discrimination laws. Many countries favor employees from the country where the company is based. As such Americans can face discrimination in the form of a “glass ceiling” where employees from the home country obtain key promotions.

Please call the Sattiraju Law Firm, PC if you are being or have been discriminated against because of your race or national origin.

Accommodations and Leaves of Absence

State and federal law requires employers to provide reasonable accommodations to disabled employees that do not impose an undue hardship on the employer. Accommodations can include renovations to work sites, adjusting work schedules, leaves of absence, and purchase or modification of equipment.
The employer is obligated to inquire whether the employee needs accommodations even if the employee has not requested accommodations. There are no magic words needed to trigger an employer’s obligation to accommodate. The law requires both sides to communicate about what accommodations are necessary and workable, which is called the “interactive process.” In other words, neither the employee nor the employer can refuse to explore other possibilities than what they initially proposed.

In addition, the Family and Medical Leave Act and the New Jersey Family Leave Act provide certain employees who have worked for an employer with leave if they meet certain criteria.
Please call the Sattiraju Law Firm, PC if you have been denied accommodations or leaves of absence.

Hostile Work Environment

A hostile work environment is not any workplace that is merely unpleasant. An unlawful hostile work environment is one in which the hostility is directed at the employee because of a legally prohibited discriminatory or retaliatory motive. For example, with sexual harassment, the unlawful motive is discrimination on the basis of the targeted employee’s sex. Most sexual harassment cases involve statements or actions that are explicitly sexual in nature.

In order to be legally actionable, the conduct must be severe or pervasive. “Severe” refers to a small number of incidents that are particularly bad. Even a single incident of sexual harassment is unlawful if it is severe enough. “Pervasive” refers to many incidents that are not that actionable in isolation, but constitute a hostile work environment when taken together.

Whistleblowing and Anti-retaliation

The New Jersey Conscientious Employee Protection Act is one of the most sweeping anti-retaliation laws in the country. The New Jersey Law Against Discrimination, and many aspects of New York law, have strong anti-retaliation provisions for employees that report illegality to their employers or to the government.

New Jersey’s Conscientious Employee Protection Act protects employees who (a) reveal information to a supervisor or the government (which includes filing a lawsuit or testifying before a public body), or (b) object to something, or (c) refuse to participate in something they believe is illegal.

In order to be protected from retaliation, a whistleblower does not need to cite a specific law or public policy. Whistleblowers do not even have to be correct that the underlying conduct is illegal if they reasonably believe that the wrongful conduct was unlawful, improper healthcare, or in violation of a public policy protecting the general public or the environment.

The Sattiraju Law Firm has earned impressive victories in appellate courts and before juries in whistleblower cases, and has obtained significant settlements for our whistleblower clients.

Please call the Sattiraju Law Firm, PC if you have been retaliated against because you blew the whistle on unlawful conduct.

Severance Review

Many companies offer their terminated employees severance packages, which is a promise to continue paying salary and benefits for a specified length of time in exchange for complicity with certain terms. We can review your severance package to determine whether it can be revised to be more fair to you.