Maryland Workplace Retaliation Lawyer
No one wants to be treated poorly by their employer, especially when they are trying to do the right thing. Many employees who chose to come forward and report unsafe working conditions, discrimination, or violations of wage and hour laws are subjected to hostile actions from their employer as a result. Conduct of this nature is referred to as retaliation and is impermissible under the law.
A Maryland workplace retaliation lawyer with the Spiggle Law Firm may be able to help you pursue a claim for retaliation. Our attorneys are passionate advocates for employees who suffer unfair treatment in the workplace.
What Qualifies as Retaliatory Behavior?
Retaliatory actions are never pleasant, and they usually create a hostile and unwelcoming work environment for the employees who are targeted. Classic examples of employer retaliation include termination, threats, demotion, elimination of benefits, and transfer to a less favorable work space or position.
The key to demonstrating that retaliation took place is proving that some negative action took place as a direct result of your reporting or refusal to engage in illegal activity. As an employee, you are only legally protected from retaliation when you are engaging in a legally protected activity and asserting your rights under the law. The law does not protect you from punishment or disciplinary actions at work that are not connected to participation in a protected action.
In the context of retaliation, engaging in a protected activity refers to when an employee exercises their rights under an existing equal opportunity employment law or participates in any part of a proceeding under these laws. The following are some of the state and federal equal opportunity employment statutes that protect employees in Maryland:
- Code of Maryland §20-602
- Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)
- Americans with Disability Act (ADA)
- Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA)
- Title VII of Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII)
Most employers are subject to these laws, but there are some exceptions for companies with less than a certain number of employees on staff.
Legal Protections from Retaliation in Maryland
Maryland workers have many protections under state and federal law that are designed to protect them from retaliation and other unfair or discriminatory practices in the workplace. Pursuant to the employment at-will doctrine that Maryland follows, workers can be fired at any time an employer decides for any reason whatsoever.
Despite this unforgiving doctrine, there are some exceptions that limit your employer’s ability to terminate you “at-will.” Under Maryland common law, there are certain public policy exceptions to the employment at-will doctrine. In addition, there are statutory exceptions under both Maryland-specific and federal laws.
Filing a Retaliation Claim in Maryland
Before filing a claim for employer retaliation, it is important to gather all evidence available. Without a clear timeline of how the events of your case transpired, proving a retaliation claim can be challenging.
Depending on the circumstances, you may need to file with the Equal Opportunity Employment Commission (EEOC) or the equivalent state agency in Maryland, which is the Maryland Commission on Civil Rights (MCCR). Both these agencies investigate claims of violations of civil rights, wrongful termination, and retaliation.
Call a Maryland Retaliation Attorney Today
The administrative proceedings and deadlines involved with either of these agencies can be intricate. Fortunately, working with an experienced Maryland workplace retaliation attorney could make getting through it much less overwhelming.
At the Spiggle Law Firm, we could thoroughly evaluate your individual case and pursue the course of action that is most beneficial to you. If you think your employer is taking retaliatory action against you, click here for a free online case review by a seasoned Maryland workplace retaliation lawyer.