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According to the Pew Research Center, four in ten women in America experience gender discrimination in the workplace.
How Do You Sue Someone for Gender Discrimination?
Over time, America has seen many advancements to support equal rights. But, these efforts continue to fall short in critical ways for swaths of the population. As the data shows, we have many improvements to make and legal battles to fight.
Proving gender discrimination continues to be a distinct challenge in these cases. The answer to “How do you sue someone” for this violation of the law is not always a straightforward path. Identify the route that may work well for your circumstances through the details provided in this guide today.
Gender Discrimination Laws
Planning for a gender discrimination lawsuit, or knowing how do you sue someone for gender discrimination, starts with examining existing legislation that supports your case. For this article, we will take a look at federal and state laws that justify litigation.
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
This landmark legislation provides comprehensive consequences for discrimination. However, it also has a critical limitation that can affect those that work for small businesses. Federal litigation only applies to companies that have 15 or more employees. Some states have legislation that lowers this bar so more residents can pursue civil redress.
State Discrimination Laws
Some states are at the forefront of gender discrimination and use their power to protect residents. The legislation they pass allows for a lawsuit through the state court system. Furthermore, they may have programs designed to help victims seek a remedy for this injustice.
For instance, the California Gender Recognition Act is a great example of legislation at the forefront of addressing discrimination. This law makes obtaining identification documents much easier for transgender and nonbinary people. Moreover, it delivers recognition from the government that employers and other entities must acknowledge.
The New York City Bar Association points out the differences between how city and state laws protect residents. For example, their gender discrimination laws apply to businesses with four or more employees. Moreover, their state legislation also includes protections for transgender people in the workplace.
Each state has its strengths and weaknesses in this area. While many cases will go to the federal government, you will want to discuss your options under state law with a gender discrimination lawyer.
Examples of Gender Discrimination
Most gender discrimination lawsuits find their basis in situations that happen at work. The damages that you suffer are more transparent and measurable under this circumstance. For instance, the wages you lost due to prejudice against you are easily quantifiable.
There is a wide range of activities that could qualify as gender discrimination. A few of the most common examples are:
- Receiving a lower wage increase despite equal or superior work quality than members of the opposite sex
- Fencing questions during an interview about marital status, children, or plans to procreate
- Leaving you out of meetings, preferred assignments, or overtime opportunities
- Making disparaging remarks about gender or gender expression
- Misgendering or refusing to use preferred gender pronouns
This list is not comprehensive. It focuses on direct examples of discrimination, but there are also times when someone’s negligence or indirect actions can be illegal.
There are a few steps that anyone who wonders, how do you sue someone for gender discrimination, must go through. The following paragraphs outline what many other litigants have done to succeed in their civil actions.
Report Discrimination to HR or File a Grievance
Many cases depend on documenting your efforts to resolve the problem internally. You will want to demonstrate that you made a professional objection through the appropriate channels. Therefore, filing a grievance with HR can be a crucial first step.
Larger organizations may have a formal process they want you to follow. But you can also write a letter that details how and why you were negatively impacted by becoming the target of discrimination.
Get Copies of Your HR Files
The attorneys that defend an employer will rely heavily on the personnel files retained by the company. Anything they can use to besmirch your performance or conduct at work is to their benefit. Accordingly, you must prepare to defend your professional record.
While employed, you have the right to request records related to your employment. Any disciplinary measures or commendations will be significant to share with your attorney.
Consult With a Gender Discrimination Attorney
Ideally, you will have the opportunity to speak with an attorney as early as possible. Regardless, you will want to meet with legal counsel before taking formal action beyond your employer’s control. But, hiring a gender discrimination lawyer could be your best course of action. They can help you understand what should and should not happen outside the confines of the corporate structure.
File a Charge of Discrimination
The first action outside your employer is with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). They accept and investigate allegations of discrimination for the following reasons:
- Sex/sexual orientation
- National Origin
- Disability or Genetic Information
There is a tight window of time to file with the EEOC. You only have 180 days from the day you allege discrimination occurred.
Once received, the EEOC will notify your employer of the charges within ten days. What follows will be a mediation program to resolve your dispute without a lawsuit. This process will take time since most investigations alone need ten months to finish.
Having legal advice during this period can be incredibly consequential. You do not want to accept a lowball settlement and leave yourself without further options for civil redress. Alternatively, your lawyer could recommend taking the offer instead of risking a trial with an uncertain outcome.
File a Lawsuit
While you may have to go through the EEOC first, that doesn’t limit you to their solutions. In some circumstances, filing a lawsuit is the only option to accomplish your goals.
It is tempting to believe that you can get to this stage faster than reality allows. Regardless of the frustrations over the time litigation can take, you need to take each step carefully and intentionally.
Talk to an Attorney About How to Sue Someone for Gender Discrimination
Understanding how to sue someone for gender discrimination is essential, but it is only the beginning. There are many more opportunities to boost your confidence in your case. Consequently, there are also ways you can inadvertently reduce the number of options available.
If you believe you have a case worth pursuing, you should speak to an attorney immediately. Send us a request through this website or call (866) 345 – 6784 today to connect with a local lawyer who is ready to help you.