Employees are the foundation of your company. Most of them add talent, expertise, and a positive attitude to the workplace. However, disputes can still arise, causing significant problems between employees and employers. Employers may face pay and discrimination issues or wish to fire troubling workers appropriately. Employees could have legal issues and concerns over their rights and potential workplace violations by their employers.
No matter what situation you find yourself in, a New York employment disputes lawyer can help you. At Sparks Law, our diligent attorneys are skilled at drafting and reviewing employment and severance contracts, providing a suitable employee handbook, and representing clients in lawsuits and before regulatory agencies.
New York is generally an at-will state in which employers can terminate employees at any time for no reason, although some exceptions apply. For instance, New York City passed an ordinance to protect fast-food workers, making it more difficult to fire them when disputes arise.
In general, employers cannot create a toxic or discriminatory work environment to force employees to resign. An experienced local attorney could review the facts of an employment dispute to determine whether any legal violations occurred.
Some employees may be offered employment contracts if an employer wishes to secure their services for the contract term. These agreements are in writing and can serve as a roadmap for how parties conduct themselves and resolve disputes. New York employers and employees should contact a knowledgeable attorney to draft these essential documents and help prevent future disputes.
Workplace discrimination occurs in many forms, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has named several protected classes that are usually the target of discrimination. Discrimination happens when employees are treated differently than their peers because of the identified trait. According to the EEOC, discrimination can occur because of:
Employees who believe they are victims of discrimination can file complaints with the EEOC. A New York lawyer could represent a client at an EEOC hearing or lawsuit based on a workplace or discrimination dispute.
Money is often the reason behind workplace disputes. New York state’s minimum wage differs depending on the region and industry but is generally $12.50 per hour as of 2021, and it will increase every year until it is at least $15.00.
The federal minimum wage set by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) is $7.25 per hour. New York employers must pay the higher amount in most cases. Those who do not can face employment disputes governed by the state or the federal Department of Labor. Employees can also try to settle wage disputes in court with the advice of a nearby employment lawyer.
Sexual harassment in the workplace continues to make headlines as a prevalent problem in society. Sexual harassment complaints at work are handled by the EEOC but can also land an employer or fellow employee in court. Employees may claim harassment for a boss’s inappropriate behavior. These complaints can also arise if an employee reports a coworker’s actions and management does not properly handle the situation.
Repeated conduct offensive to others can also be considered sexual harassment, such as an employee telling off-color jokes or displaying suggestive photos at work. An experienced attorney can help a New York company to include procedures for reporting harassment in an employee handbook and avoid future litigation.
Wherever people gather, disputes will occur, and the workplace is no exception. Employers can prevent some of them by requiring employees to read and sign a comprehensive employee manual that details expected conduct and procedures for reporting complaints.
A New York employment disputes lawyer is your best resource for workplace protocol and dispute resolution. Whether you wish to head off issues before they occur or need representation in court or before a regulatory agency, call Sparks Law today for an initial consultation.