Discrimination and Harassment

Discrimination and harassment claims often increase in a down economy. Learn the proper techniques for conducing proper workplace harassment investigations, providing sexual harassment training, and more to reduce claims of employment discrimination and preventing sexual harassment in the workplace.

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If employees are at-will workers, you can fire them for any reason or no reason at all, as long as it’s not discriminatory. But, as a new ruling shows, supervisors should resist that quick-trigger urge if that employee recently voiced a discrimination complaint ...

In a decision that could spark more lawsuits against retirement-plan administrators, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Feb. 20 that participants in 401(k) plans can sue to recover losses if they think their account was mismanaged ...
Sometimes, when an employee files a frivolous suit, it’s tempting to seek payback. If you succeed in getting the litigation dismissed, why not insist the losing employee pay attorneys’ fees and court costs? Before you throw good money after bad, consider whether you want your attorneys to spend even more time trying to get the employee to cough up ...
You know you should document problems and violations before disciplining an employee who previously performed well. You create a paper trail showing warnings, counseling and efforts to get the employee back on track. But if the employee you disciplined can show that others with the same shortcomings got off, that paper trail may come back to haunt you ...
Courts are naturally suspicious when employers trot out subjective discharge reasons like “not a team player” or “fails to inspire subordinates,” which may mask an underlying discriminatory attitude. One way to add credibility to subjective evaluation criteria is to ask co-workers and subordinates for their confidential assessments ...
It’s not discrimination for an employer to offer training to some employees but not others—if the training doesn’t lead to greater pay, advancement opportunities or other tangible benefits. Simply put, employers don’t have to worry about discrimination lawsuits if their decisions are based on solid business reasons ...

Good—and somewhat obvious—news: Job applicants who are not members of a protected class can’t sue for discrimination on the basis that an employer’s hiring practices discriminate against minorities ...

In tight economic times, you may have to trim staff to save money. Undoubtedly, some of those RIF victims will be older. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that you will be on the losing end of an age discrimination lawsuit. To check where you stand, do a quick age audit ...
One of the easiest ways for employees to win discrimination cases is to allege that their employers punished them for complaining about alleged discrimination. Often, employees win those retaliation cases even while losing the underlying discrimination complaint. But employers can defeat retaliation charges by showing that the employee never complained in the first place ...
Employers covered by the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act don’t have to worry about being sued separately under the Pennsylvania Constitution’s Equal Rights Amendment ...
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