Maryland Family Responsibilities Discrimination Lawyer
As more and more households require both adults to work to support their families, it can be difficult for people to take the time they need to care for an ill or injured family member. Still, United States laws protect the rights of workers to take leave in certain situations to care for their ailing family members.
Beyond this, the law prohibits employers from denying an employee’s valid request for leave due to their age, sex, or religion. All employees have the same right to take leave as long as the reason for the leave is valid, and any employer who denies this leave is in violation of federal laws.
A Maryland family responsibilities discrimination lawyer at the Spiggle Law Firm may be able to help if you have had your request for leave illegally denied. If retained, we could file complaints with the federal government or in court on your behalf to demand enforcement of your rights. Work with one of our determined workplace discrimination attorneys that could fight for you.
Right to Leave for Maryland Employees
The idea that workers are entitled to take leave to care for a sick loved one is enshrined in the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). This law provides 12 weeks a year for workers to take leave under very specific circumstances, which include:
- Taking time to recover from a personal injury or illness
- Giving birth to a child and to raise the child
- Taking time to serve as a caregiver for a sick or ill child, spouse, or parent
In addition to these limiting circumstances, this law only gives leave to workers at employers with at least 50 employees. You must have worked at your company for at least one year before asking for the leave and worked for at least 1,250 hours in that year.
The law further states that all employees who meet the above requirements must be allowed to take leave without discrimination. The FMLA and other anti-discrimination laws protect your right to take leave regardless of your age, gender, religion, or marital status. A Maryland family responsibilities discrimination lawyer could help protect your rights under FMLA.
How Could an Employee Report Family Responsibilities Discrimination?
Allegations that an employer violated a worker’s right to be a caregiver are handled by the Wage and Hour Division (WHD) of the United States Department of Labor. This agency has the authority to conduct an independent investigation of all allegations of illegal leave denial, which often involves gathering documentary evidence, interviewing witnesses, and conducting on-site inspections.
The WHD has the ability to order your employer to grant the leave, issue civil penalties against the workplace, and even order your employer to provide compensation to you, their employee. As an alternative, you may take their case directly to court.
The FMLA gives workers a specific cause of action that serves as a key to a United States District Court. This option may be a better choice if you feel that a jury of their peers is a better audience to hear your complaint.
Reach Out to a Maryland Family Responsibilities Discrimination Attorney Today
Workers at companies of 50 employees or more have the right to take unpaid leave to care for an ailing family member. It does not matter if that worker is male or female, young or old, or any particular race or orientation—the law states that all workplaces must treat workers equally when they make such a request.
Unfortunately, this law is not always perfectly followed. If your employer denies an otherwise valid request for leave because of your age, sex, or religion, you have the right to file a complaint. This complaint may be handled by the Department of Labor or taken directly to court.
A skilled Maryland family responsibilities discrimination lawyer could help you choose the option that is best for you. Each case is unique and what is best for one worker may not be for another, so click here for Spiggle Law Firm’s no-cost online assessment to explore what may be best in your circumstances.