How Do I Prove Discrimination?
There are generally two theories for proving discrimination:
- Disparate treatment occurs when an employer treats an individual less favorably than others because of the individual’s protected status – for example, his or her race, religion, sex, sexual orientation or age.
- Disparate impact occurs when an employer has an employment practice or a selection policy that appears neutral but has a disproportionate adverse impact on members of a protected group.
What Damages Are Recoverable?
In a civil action under FEHA, damages for lost earnings, including future lost earnings in certain circumstances, and for emotional distress may be recovered — if proven. Punitive damages against a private employer may also be awarded if there is clear and convincing evidence of malice, oppression or fraud. Under FEHA, the court also has discretion to award reasonable attorney’s fees and costs, including expert witness fees, to the prevailing party.
What If Your Employer’s Conduct Forces You To Quit?
Under certain circumstances, an employee who is “forced to quit” has a legal claim for constructive discharge. In general, for a seemingly voluntary resignation to be treated as a “discharge,” the employee must have been required to endure intolerable working conditions associated with the employer’s violation of a statute or a public policy. But when an employer demands a resignation in lieu of being fired, this will be treated as a discharge not a constructive discharge.
For more information regarding Employment Law click → Employment Law