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Knowing Your Employment Rights Securing a Future

Posted by Richard Sopko on Sep 21 2017

A few generations ago it was the normal to work your whole life in a single field or career. The last twenty years have seen a dramatic shift with people switching jobs to attempt to stay in demand as the workforce changes. It’s now a fact that before you’re 32 you will have an average of 4 different jobs. Take also into account that a 2014 Forbes article maintained that people who stay in the same job longer than two years make 50% less due to a mix of small yearly increases and high inflation.

Due to these statistics there’s a fair chance that you or someone you know will be switching jobs in the future with all that entails. It’s important that both during the interview process and starting or leaving a position to know what your rights are, and what you are entitled to.

After you have sent your resume to every corner of the globe and are setting up interviews, remember that a potential employer has certain questions he’s prohibited from asking you.

  • They may not inquire if you have participated in any pro-Union activities.
  • Asking specific disability or medical history related questions are prohibited. Such as asking if you have previously ever filed for Worker’s Compensation.
  • During the interview a prospective employer is not allowed to ask you about any convictions you may have, unless it is specifically important for the position, such as a police officer.
  • Any question related to your age or ethnicity is considered discriminatory according to the Equal Opportunity Commission.

After you’ve gotten the job it will be important you learn about your new office culture. However, some of the behavior of your new employer and coworkers may be deemed as exploitative or harassing, not simply the unique quirks of a particular office environment. Here are a few examples of things you may be faced with.

  • Any work that an employer deems be ‘suffered or permitted’ by an employee is compensable time and deserves to be paid for. If an employee has completed extra work beyond that of the usual 40 hours and into overtime the employer must compensate for that work being completed. This stands whether or not the employer desired the employee to complete the extra work, but the employee can be reprimanded.
  • Even though you may feel like you are being unfairly treated, your new employer has the right to criticize and even harass an employee on the grounds of your work. It becomes harassment when it is focused on a ‘protected characteristic’ of an employee these include but are not limited to age, gender, or ethnicity. The harassment must also be shown to be ‘severe and pervasive.’
  • Your new job must reasonably accommodate your disability. Regardless of your employers awareness of that disability the employee must make the initial request for special accommodation. This is also sometimes true of the employment process.

These are just a slight few of the multitude of laws and regulations that protect the workers and the workplace. Since the early 1900’s the laws that dictate how employers and employees interact is always changing. You may be interested in reviewing these documents to learn more. If you have any questions or feel that you have been harassed or treated in a legally improper way, please reach out to the Simon Law Group to speak to our experts.

If you are seeking representation for an employment law case, call today for a free consultation 800-709-1131 or fill out a contact form on our website for a no-cost consultation. We hope to hear from you today!

Topics: Disability, Employment Law, Discrimination, fresh start, NJ Criminal Lawyer, nj criminal defense, Employment Lawyer, NJ Lawyers, Planning for the Future

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