When you’re laid off, it can be natural to feel singled out. Normally, you’d probably brush this feeling away. But sometimes those feelings can be spot-on. While it is illegal to fire someone based on discrimination, that doesn’t mean that employers always act legally. It is important for you as an employee to know what is and isn’t legal when it comes to lay-offs.
You need to know your rights as an employee. Keep the following in mind:
- If two employees have the same qualifications, the employee with less seniority should be laid off.
- It is illegal to fire an employee based on age, sex, religion, ethnicity, sexual preference, or nation of origin.
- It is illegal to fire an employee because he or she cannot speak English, unless the employer can prove that fluency in English is an important part of the job description.
- It is illegal to coerce an employee into quitting or resigning instead of being fired.
- It is illegal to force an employee to retire based on age. While it was common in the past to require employees to retire at age 70, the US Code of Federal Regulations has illegalized this practice. In certain cases, though, it is legal to require retirement if an employee is unable to physically perform the job for health reasons.
If you suspect that you or someone you love was laid off illegally, contact the Austin employment attorneys of The Melton Law Firm by calling 512-330-0017.