Monthly Archives: May 2015

Linking Discrimination and Wrongful Termination

In many states, an employee can be terminated for no reason whatsoever. However, this does not mean that it is legal to terminate employees for reasons that are against the laws of the nation. Wrongful termination in Texas, if linked to discrimination can end in the employee hiring a lawyer, taking the employer to court, and possibly being awarded for damages and lost wages.

Age Discrimination

Wrongful termination in Texas includes any type of age discrimination. Some employers may be accused of thinking that it is better to use the younger, faster, more technologically advanced younger generation for work. It is considered wrongful termination to terminate someone’s employment based on his or her age if the employee is in the protected class of age 40 or older.

If a court finds that the employee was terminated due to his/her age, then the employee may be entitled to compensation for damages and lost wages. It is best to consult a lawyer that specializes in these matters in order to determine if the employee does indeed have a case. Likewise, the employer should also consult with a lawyer who specializes in employment law to determine what defenses may be available to the employer.

Gender Discrimination

Despite the advances in modern society, there is still some belief that some employers feel men are better than women are and can do a better job. It is unlawful to terminate anyone based on his or her gender. Failure to promote a woman because of her gender or even to terminate a man based on his gender could be discrimination and grounds for a lawsuit.

These are just a few ways wrongful termination can be linked to discrimination, and end in a lawsuit.

Difference Between Harassment and Discrimination in the Workplace

Many employees fail to realize that there is a difference in harassment and discrimination in the workplace. Under federal and state regulations, it is unlawful to discriminate against or harass someone that works for the employer. Below are examples of differences between harassment and discrimination in the workplace.

Harassment in the Workplace

Harassment in the workplace includes the following.

  • Telling jokes that are insulting about certain racial groups or certain genders
  • Sending emails that are illicit or sexual
  • Having screensavers or posters that are offensive or pornographic in nature
  • Putting down or picking on someone’s religion or ethnicity
  • Asking questions that are considered to be too personal about someone’s personal life or that are sexual in nature
  • Openly being racial

Discrimination in the Workplace

Discrimination is a little different from harassment. The categories are listed below.

  • Race
  • Color
  • Sex
  • Religion
  • National origin
  • Age
  • Sexual orientation
  • Disability
  • Racial
  • Veterans status

If an employee feels that he/she has been discriminated against or harassed in the workplace, though they are different things, it is best to contact a lawyer, explain the facts, and see what can be done. No one, including the employee and the employer, should ever let discrimination or harassment continue. It is against the law and employees can have it stopped by filing charges against the employer alleging harassment or discrimination. Employees and employers should contact their lawyers today for more information.

Preparing for the Opening Session with a Wrongful Termination Mediator

Mediation for wrongful termination claims and other legal matters is used quite often. Mediation is a way for the employer and an employee involved in a wrongful termination suit to come to an agreement during mediation instead of going through a court battle.

The first thing lawyers for the employee and the employer to do is find a wrongful termination mediator in Texas to help with the mediation, and then start preparing for the opening session. The parties and their lawyers need to listen to the mediator in most things, because after all he/she is experienced on these matters.

At no time in the mediation, will the wrongful termination mediator in Texas, take sides. He/she is there as a neutral party to ensure that heads are cool and the parties bargain in good faith to attempt to reach an agreement.

When preparing for the opening session, the mediator will go over what the employee needs to bring and what the employer needs to bring as well. Both the parties and/or their lawyers are allowed to make opening statements when the mediation session begins, so everyone needs to prepare their statements in advance and know exactly what they want to say. If the parties and /or their lawyers come unprepared, it may cause the mediation to fail and result in an impasse.

Remember, the parties can end up in court, if the employee and the employer don’t come to terms during the mediation. So listening to the mediator is very important. Hiring a mediator is a process that requires research before making any decision.

Houston mediator, John W. Kelly, Jr., has been mediating wrongful termination cases since 1992, either as an advocate or neutral mediator. As an experienced wrongful termination mediator, he can assist the parties in identifying the strengths and weaknesses of their positions. Contact him today at 713-775-3003 or send him an email at johnkelly@experiencedhoustonmediator.com for a complimentary initial consultation.

How do I Start a Wrongful Termination Case in Texas?

In today’s world, there are laws that protect people from being terminated from a job for unlawful reasons. If an employee feels that he/she was fired without good cause, then the employee needs to contact a reputable lawyer to talk about the employee’s alleged wrongful termination in Texas. A lawyer will be able to examine the case and let the employee know if the employee has a chance in court.

Whether the employee decides to ask for his/her job back, get a severance package for being terminated, or sue the company instead, a reputable lawyer will be able to help the employee find the strengths of the employee’s case in order to help the employee get the best possible outcome.

Wrongful termination in Texas is one of the most common types of employment lawsuits filed. The first thing the employee needs to do after the employee consults his/her lawyer is to determine the employee’s cause of action and figure out the reason that employee believes he/she was terminated for no legal reason.

The employee will need to prove his/her unlawful termination as well, by providing things such as paystubs and records of when the employee was hired and terminated. Once the employee has all of these things to show his/her lawyer, the lawyer will be able to help the employee determine if the employee has a case in court.

Likewise, when an employer is accused of wrongful termination, the employer should contact a reputable lawyer to review the employee’s claims, and identify possible legal defenses such as just cause, lack of discrimination, statute of limitations, etc. The employer should also gather all relevant documents such as the employer’s employment and human resources policies and practices, the employee’s personnel file and all documents justifying the termination. Once the employer has all these things to show to its lawyer, the lawyer will be able to determine the lawfulness of its action and any viable legal defenses.

Both the employee and the employer should make sure that they talk to a reputable lawyer.