Retaliation claims are among the most common employment law claims. Managers (or even HR) can be vindictive and retaliate against employees. However, retaliation is unlawful where the employee engages in protected activity. That is, employers may not retaliate against employees who assert certain rights under the law. Laws that include prohibition of retaliation include:
Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1963
The Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA)
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)
Examples of Protected Activities
Examples of protected activities include taking FMLA leave to treat for a serios health condition or to care for a close family member with a serious health condition, requesting a reasonable accommodation due to a disability, filing a complaint with or participating in an investigation by a regulatory agency and/or reporting discrimination in the workplace. Adverse employment actions take many forms but generally involve changes to the terms and conditions of employment and may include intimidation, threats, pay decreases, demotion, reassignment, and even termination.