Filing A Workplace Discrimination Claim In Washington

The following article will cover:

  • Who can be the subject of a discrimination claim, including employers, coworkers, and supervisors.
  • The protections offered by workplace discrimination laws for disabled individuals.
  • When to engage an employment discrimination attorney for issues related to unjust treatment or compensation, and the process of filing a complaint with relevant agencies.

Who Can I File A Discrimination Claim Against?

Filing A Workplace Discrimination Claim In Washington

The truth is, you have the right to file a discrimination claim against any individual, but the key lies in filing against someone who can be held responsible and liable by law, like your employer.

In Washington State, both coworkers and supervisors can be sued in state or federal court, but federal courts primarily recognize the employer as the responsible party. Additionally, individuals can be included in the claim if you allege a state-pendant jurisdiction.

Do Workplace Discrimination Laws Protect Me From Losing My Job If I Become Disabled?

Workplace discrimination laws offer protection for disabled individuals. However, the specifics of your situation dictate the type of claim you can make.

For example, if you've become disabled while on the job, your claim would fall under workers' compensation labor and industry regulations. However, if you applied for a job while disabled and faced rejection or retaliation due to your disability, that would qualify as a discrimination claim.

I Need To Take Short-Term Disability Leave. Can My Employer Fire Me Or Demote Me?

Washington state laws protect you from discrimination based on your disability. As a result, your employer should not terminate or demote you if your short-term disability leave aligns with company policies and legal guidelines.

In this scenario, you will need to consider your company's handbook regulations and secure supporting documentation about your medical situation from your doctor. In any case, if you have questions about your rights as an employee, it’s usually best to consult with an attorney who can help you to ensure you’re on the right path.

What Evidence Does My Western Washington Employment Discrimination Attorney Need To Determine If My Workplace Discrimination Claim Is Viable?

As you prepare to present your workplace discrimination claim to your attorney, several elements need to be considered:

  • Employee Profile: Provide any references, recommendations, or performance reviews that showcase your work ethic.
  • Personal Interaction: A face-to-face meeting helps your attorney to assess your conduct and demeanor.
  • Performance Issues: If you have received any "last chance" warnings or notes for improvement, share the details and context in which they arose with your attorney.
  • Witnesses: If you have any coworkers or non-managerial staff who can support your claim through declarations or affidavits, their input can be invaluable.
  • Questionable Conduct: It's crucial to disclose any instance where you may have participated in the very behavior you're claiming. For instance, if you've engaged in inappropriate behavior at work that might undermine your case, it's essential to share this with your attorney.
  • Online Presence: Your social media accounts can and will be scrutinized for any information that could potentially harm your case. If you have any work-related information online, it’s best to share it with your attorney upfront.

Always remember, no matter how small or seemingly irrelevant, any detail could be significant in your claim.

When Should I Hire A Washington Employment Discrimination Attorney?

Engage the services of an employment discrimination attorney as soon as you believe you are receiving unjust treatment or unfair compensation. Once you’ve consulted with an attorney, it’s generally advisable to file an initial complaint with the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries. This can be the beginning of a multi-agency claim process, preserving your statutory rights.

What's more, it's important to note a common misconception: That unionized workers must solely seek redress through their union. Unions can indeed offer advice and assist with filing a grievance. However, you also maintain the right to file with external bodies, such as the EEOC or the Washington State Human Rights Commission.

By adhering to specific timelines - six months with the WHRC and ten months with the EEOC - and filing with one agency, you automatically cover the other. This process prevents the need for filing two separate claims or complaints. For more information on Filing A Workplace Discrimination Claim In WA, an initial consultation is your next best step.

Beverly Grant Law Firm, P.S. - Steilacoom, WA

Call Now To Schedule Your Consultation

(253) 400-2232

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