Introduction to Employment Law
Employment law is a broad area of law that covers virtually every aspect of the employer/employee relationship. It is complex and constantly evolving, and is made up of federal, state and local laws, including anti-discrimination laws, minimum wage laws, workplace safety laws and laws providing for family medical leave. Employment law attorneys represent people and businesses in cases involving issues of discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, wrongful termination, wage shorting, trade secrets, non-compete agreements, severance agreements and many other issues.
Key Federal Employment Laws
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which made discrimination based on race, religion, sex, national origin and other characteristics illegal.
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which was enacted in 1990 to add protections for people with disabilities from discrimination in employment.
The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which entitles eligible employees of covered employers to take unpaid, job-protected leave for specified family and medical reasons with continuation of group health insurance coverage under the same terms and conditions as if the employee had not taken leave.
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (ADEA), which protects employees over the age of 40 from discrimination.
The Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978, which amended Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to prohibit sex discrimination on the basis of pregnancy, childbirth, or related medical conditions.
The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA), which protects civilian job rights and benefits for veterans and members actively serving in the National Guard and Reserve components of the U.S. armed forces.
Ohio Employment Law
Section 4112.02(A) of the Ohio Revised Code prohibits discrimination “because of the race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age or ancestry of any person.” With some exceptions, the types of discrimination that are prohibited are the same under Ohio law and federal law. Still, there are some procedural and other differences that an employment attorney considers when deciding which law(s) to sue under.
Do employees usually sue under Ohio law, federal law, or both?
Whether an employee sues under state law, federal law, or both (and/or local laws in some cities) depends upon the number of employees the employer has (federal law usually applies only to employers with fifteen or more employees, whereas Ohio law applies to employers with four or more employees), timing (the “statute of limitations” is usually shorter under federal law, but you usually have to go through an administrative process that can take longer than filing in state court), and other practical considerations that an experienced employment attorney who practices in both state and federal courts can discuss with you.
Employment Law Cases We Handle
Click on the links below to read more about the different types of employment discrimination cases we handle.
Sexual Harassment & Hostile Work Environment
Sex Discrimination (including Equal Pay Act claims)
National Origin Discrimination
Non-Compete Agreement Issues
Negotiation of Severance Agreements
We have experience representing both people and businesses in these types of cases, and we have a track record of success, including six-figure settlements and jury verdicts on behalf of plaintiff clients and favorable results for small and mid-size business clients. We have also represented employers and employees on appeal. To read more about some of the results we have achieved for clients, click here.
If you believe your employer has unlawfully discriminated against you, we can explain your rights, give you advice based on your particular situation and explain the pros and cons of taking legal action. Likewise, if your business is facing accusations of discrimination, sexual harassment or retaliation, or if an Ohio Civil Rights Commission (OCRC) or Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charge has been filed against your business, we can provide guidance on the best strategy to address the allegations. Call us at (513) 621-4999 to discuss your employment law issue, or call Alex’s direct line at (513) 621-2500.