If you think you’ve been subjected to employment discrimination, it’s important to know your rights. Depending on the context of your case, hiring an experienced Cleveland employment discrimination lawyer to guide you through the legal process can be critical to a successful outcome.
Not all unfair treatment is illegal discrimination. For illegal discrimination to occur, you must fall into a category protected by one of the federal or state anti-discrimination laws. In fact, disability discrimination laws lay out a long list of very specific definitions regarding protected “disabilities.” A Cleveland employment discrimination attorney can help you determine whether or not you belong to a protected class.
Being part of a protected class is not, by itself, enough to win a discrimination lawsuit. You must also prove that your employer took an adverse employment action against you because of your protected status. But what is an adverse employment action? Of course, firing someone is an adverse action.
What about a negative performance review that leads to a denial of promotion? What about shift assignments that cut into your commission? A Cleveland employment discrimination lawyer can help you figure out whether your employer’s conduct was an adverse employment action constituting discrimination.
The fact that you’re in a protected category combined with the fact that your employer took some adverse action against you does not mean you have a discrimination case. You also have to prove that your employer intended to take the adverse action because of your protected status. This means that you must prove your employer’s discriminatory intent.
Proving your employer’s intent can be very difficult, especially because few employers plainly state that they are biased or discriminatory. Instead, you’ll need to gather enough evidence to convince a judge or jury that your employer took action for a discriminatory reason. For example, if your employer says that you were fired for poor performance, but your last three performance reviews were excellent, this is key evidence of a discriminatory motive.
Make sure that you keep detailed records in regards to everything that occurred within the workplace. This pertains to:
Gathering evidence for a lawsuit is one of the most crucial and valuable skills that a employment lawyer can provide. Subpoenaing key documents and taking witness depositions are just two of the important, complex steps in the “discovery phase” of a lawsuit, when evidence is collected. Obtaining the right document, testimony, or other piece of evidence can result in the difference between winning and losing your case. A Cleveland employment discrimination lawyer can handle this and all major phases of your lawsuit.
Our Cleveland Ohio employment discrimination lawyers can help you regain some of that power by giving you the information you need to take action in response to your employer’s misdeeds, or weigh your options, and make an informed decision that’s in your best interests. Call us at 440-703-8550 or submit an online inquiry to receive a consultation.