Employment Law

What Is Sexual Harassment?

Sexual Harassment includes but is not limited to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and any verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that affects your employment, which is severe or pervasive.

What Is A Whistleblower Claim?

In New Hampshire, there are generally considered two types of Whistleblower claims. The first type is a Whistleblower complaint filed under New Hampshire’s Whistleblower Protection Act. This process provides for the filing of a Complaint with the New Hampshire Department of Labor for what an employee believes to be a violation.

The second type of Whistleblower’s Complaint is sometimes referred to as a wrongful termination or wrongful discharge claim. The facts under certain wrongful termination claims relate to an employee’s refusal to participate in certain illegal conduct or an employee reporting certain wrongful conduct which results in that employee’s termination.

Please go to Wrongful Termination for more information

 

What Are Some Examples of a Sexual Hostile Environment?

NH Sexual Hostile Environment – Leering, i.e., staring in a sexually suggestive manner

Making offensive remarks about looks, clothing, body parts

Touching in a way that may make an employee feel uncomfortable, such as patting, pinching or intentional brushing against another’s body

Telling sexual or lewd jokes, hanging sexual posters, making sexual gestures, etc.

Sending, forwarding or soliciting sexually suggestive letters, notes, emails, or images

 

What are the Requirements to File a Whistleblower’s Complaint with the New Hampshire Department of Labor?

There are strict requirements that need to be complied with such as whether or not you reported the violation to the employer, is there a grievance procedure, how long was the employer given to correct the alleged violation, did you participate in any investigation, hearing or inquiry or court action or what was the alleged illegal order that you were asked to carry out. These are just some of the facts related to filing a complaint with the New Hampshire Department of Labor.

What Is Workplace Harassment?

Unlawful harassment is a form of discrimination that violates state and federal laws.

Unwelcome verbal or physical conduct based on race, color, religion, sex (whether or not of a sexual nature and including same-gender harassment and gender identity harassment), national origin, age (40 and over), disability (mental or physical), sexual orientation, or retaliation) constitutes harassment when:

1. The conduct is sufficiently severe or pervasive to create a hostile work environment; or

2. A supervisor’s harassing conduct results in a tangible change in an employee’s employment status or benefits (for example, demotion, termination, failure to promote, etc.).

 

What Is A Hostile Work Environment?

This occurs when unwelcome comments or conduct based on sex, race or other legally protected characteristics unreasonably interferes with an employee’s work performance or creates an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment. Anyone in the workplace might commit this type of harassment — a management official, co-worker, or non-employee, such as a contractor, vendor or guest. The victim can be anyone affected by the conduct, not just the individual at whom the offensive conduct is directed.

What is a Tangible Employment Action?

Harassment that results in a tangible employment action occurs when a management official’s harassing conduct results in some significant change in an employee’s employment status (e.g., hiring, firing, promotion, failure to promote, demotion, formal discipline, such as suspension, undesirable reassignment, or a significant change in benefits, a compensation decision, or a work assignment). Only individuals with supervisory or managerial responsibility can commit this type of harassment.

Do I Have a Claim for Harassment?

A claim of harassment generally requires several elements, including:

1. The complaining party must be a member of a statutorily protected class;

2. S/he was subjected to unwelcome verbal or physical conduct related to his or her membership in that protected class;

3. The unwelcome conduct complained of was based on his or her membership in that protected class;

4. The unwelcome conduct affected a term or condition of employment and/or had the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with his or her work performance and/or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment.

 

What Protections Do I Have if I File a Discrimination Charge?

It is unlawful to retaliate against an individual for opposing employment practices that discriminate for filing a discrimination charge, testifying, or participating in any way an investigation, proceeding or litigation for unlawful discrimination.

How Do I File a Charge of Discrimination?

Our Guide to Filing a Charge of Employment Discrimination will provide you some answers to starting the process of protecting your rights.

How Do I File a Charge of Discrimination?

Our Guide to Filing a Charge of Employment Discrimination will provide you some answers to starting the process of protecting your rights.

What is Considered Not Harassment?

The anti-discrimination statute are not a general civility code. Thus, state and federal law does not prohibit simple teasing, offhand comments, or isolated incidents that are not extremely serious. Rather, the conduct must be so objectively offensive as to alter the conditions of the individual’s employment. The conditions of employment are altered only if the harassment culminates in a tangible employment action or is sufficiently severe or pervasive to create a hostile work environment.

Why Should I Choose Douglas, Leonard & Garvey As My Employment Lawyer?

Employers and their insurance companies have experienced lawyers on their side. With our employment lawyers on your side, we level the playing field. While some employment cases settle without filing a lawsuit, you need a skilled and aggressive employment lawyer so you get fair compensation. Douglas, Leonard & Garvey has the reputation and experience of being a trial law firm. What makes our law firm different is that employers and insurance companies know that we will take a case to trial if they do not offer fair compensation. If you have an inexperienced lawyer that isn’t used to going to court, you won’t have that leverage on your side. It is that leverage or the threat of taking a case to trial that gives you an advantage in your case.

The attorneys at Douglas, Leonard & Garvey have years of trial experience in handling employment cases. Choosing the right lawyer may mean the difference between success and failure.

What Are Some Examples of Non-Sexual Harassment, Hostile Work Environment?

These may include:

Use of racially derogatory words, phrases, epithets

Demonstrations of a racial or ethnic nature such as a use of gestures, pictures or drawings which would offend a particular racial or ethnic group

Comments about an individual’s skin color or other racial/ethnic characteristics

Making disparaging remarks about an individual’s gender that are not sexual in nature

Negative comments about an employee’s religious beliefs (or lack of religious beliefs)

Expressing negative stereotypes regarding an employee’s birthplace or ancestry

Negative comments regarding an employee’s age when referring to employees 40 and over

Derogatory or intimidating references to an employee’s mental or physical impairment

 

Why Should I Choose Douglas, Leonard & Garvey As My Employment Lawyer?

Employers and their insurance companies have experienced lawyers on their side. With our employment lawyers on your side, we level the playing field. While some employment cases settle without filing a lawsuit, you need a skilled and aggressive employment lawyer so you get fair compensation. Douglas, Leonard & Garvey has the reputation and experience of being a trial law firm. What makes our law firm different is that employers and insurance companies know that we will take a case to trial if they do not offer fair compensation. If you have an inexperienced lawyer that isn’t used to going to court, you won’t have that leverage on your side. It is that leverage or the threat of taking a case to trial that gives you an advantage in your case.

The attorneys at Douglas, Leonard & Garvey have years of trial experience in handling employment cases. Choosing the right lawyer may mean the difference between success and failure.

Why Should I Hire Douglas, Leonard & Garvey, P.C. as My Employment Lawyers

Many lawyers claim to have employment law experience. Also, many lawyers try to have it both ways and represent employers and employees. Our focus is on the employees.

Our employment lawyers regularly represent clients at the Department of Labor, EEOC and New Hampshire Human Rights Commission as well as try cases to juries in Superior Court. Please contact us for an immediate, free consultation at 1-800-240-1988 or complete our contact form online.

What Is The New Hampshire Commission for Human Rights?

This is the state agency established by New Hampshire law for the purpose of eliminating discrimination in employment, as well as other settings, because of age, sex, sexual orientation, race, creed, color, marital status, familial status, physical or mental disability or national origin. The Human Rights Commission receives complaints of discrimination and investigates illegal discrimination

What Are The Categories Of Illegal Discrimination In Employment?

A person may be subject to unlawful discrimination on the basis of age, sex, race, creed (religion) color, marital status, physical or mental disability, national origin or sexual orientation.

What Is The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission?

The EEOC is the federal agency that handles employment discrimination claims.

Does My Employer Have To Give Me A Reason For Firing Me?

Under New Hampshire law, an employer does not have to give a reason for terminating an employee.

What is At-Will Employment?

Under New Hampshire law, most employees are considered “at-will” employees. An at-will employee can be terminated for any reason or no reason as long as the termination is not based on an illegal or discriminatory reason.

Please go to Wrongful Termination for more information.

 

What Is A Whistleblower’s Claim?

Under New Hampshire law, an employee may file a Whistleblower’s Complaint with the New Hampshire Department of Labor. Depending on the circumstances of the termination, a Whistleblower’s Complaint may be based on an employee reporting a violation of a law or a rule.

Please go to Whistleblower Complaint for more information

I Am Pregnant. Do I Have Any Protection Under The Law?

An employer may not discriminate against someone for pregnancy-related conditions. However, an employer may require its employee to submit a doctor’s statement concerning their inability to work before granting leave or paying sick benefits. Discrimination on the basis of any pregnancy-related condition constitutes unlawful sex discrimination.

Please go to Pregnancy Discrimination for more information.

 

What Is The Family Medical Leave Act?

This is a federal law that allows anyone who works in a company of fifty (50) or more employees to take up to twelve (12) weeks of medical leave a year. In order to qualify for the Family medical Leave Act, an employee must meet certain requirements that are set forth in the law. Some of these requirements include that to be an eligible employee, you must have worked for the employer for at least twelve (12) month and one thousand two hundred fifty (1,250) hour in the year preceding the request for leave.

Please go to Family Medical Leave Act for more information

What Damages Can I Get In A Wrongful Termination Case?

Under New Hampshire law, you are entitled to receive damages for any lost wages (back or front pay), lost benefits (examples include insurance coverage, 401(k) contributions), emotional distress damages as well as any other expenses incurred as a result of your termination (such as counseling or medical bills)

I Believe My Employer Is Discriminating Against Me, Do I Have A Claim?

Discrimination is only illegal if it is because you belong to a legally-protected category. These protective categories include age, sex, sexual orientation, race, creed (religion), color, marital status, physical or mental disability or national origin as well as veteran/military status.

Please go to Employment Law areas for more information.

 

Should I Have An Attorney Review The Severance Package I Was Offered Before I Sign It?

Yes. As a part of the severance package, your former employer is requiring you to sign away or waive certain rights you have in order to receive the severance benefits being offered. The most important right or protection you are waiving is your ability to sue or file a lawsuit against your former employer. Other common components of a severance agreement include a confidentiality agreement.

Because you are waiving rights and protections, it is important to have a severance agreement reviewed by an experienced employment lawyer.

Please go to Severance Agreements for more information.

 

Do I Need To Hire An Employment Lawyer?

Yes. Employers and their insurance companies have experienced lawyers on their side. Because of the different laws protecting employees’ rights, it is important to have an experienced employment lawyer represent you. Having a skilled and experienced lawyer representing you will level the playing field against your former employer. Many victims of illegal employment make the mistake of not consulting with an experienced employment lawyer. An employment lawyer can explain to you your rights, whether you have an employment case and, if so, what damages you may be entitled to receive under the law.

Our guide, How to Choose an Employment Lawyer, provides answers to questions you may have about hiring the right lawyer for your employment law case.

 

Why Should I Hire Douglas, Leonard & Garvey, P.C. as My Employment Lawyers?

Many lawyers claim to have employment law experience. Also, many lawyers try to have it both ways and represent employers and employees. Our loyalty I simple – we represent employees.

Our employment lawyers regularly represent clients at the EEOC and New Hampshire Human Rights Commission as well as try cases to juries in Superior Court. Please contact us for an immediate, free consultation at 1-800-240-1988 or complete our contact form online.

 

What Is National Origin Discrimination?

Whether an employee or a job applicant’s ancestry is Mexican, Ukrainian, Filipino, Arab, American Indian, or any other nationality, he or she is entitled to the same employment opportunities as anyone else. National Origin Discrimination means treating someone less favorably because he or she comes from a particular place, because of his or her ethnicity or accent or because it is believed that he or she has a particular ethnic background. It can also mean treating someone less favorably at work because of marriage or other association with someone of a particular nationality.

Are Employers Allowed To Pay Me Less Because Of My Nationality?

No. Paying an employee less because of his or her national origin is unlawful workplace discrimination.

Can My Employer Refuse To Promote Me Because Of My National Origin?

No. Refusing to promote an employee because of that individual’s national origin is prohibited.

What Is The Employer’s Obligation Regarding Workplace Harassment?

Employers must provide a workplace that is free of harassment based on national origin, ethnicity or religion. They may be liable not only for harassment by supervisors but also by co-workers.

What If My Employer Retaliates Against Me For Filing A Complaint?

It is unlawful to retaliate against a person for imposing employment practices that discriminate based on sex or filing a discrimination charge, testifying, or participating in any way in an investigation, proceeding or litigation under state or federal sexual harassment laws.

Do I Need to Hire an Employment Lawyer?

Yes. Employers and their insurance companies have experienced lawyers on their side. Because of the different laws protecting employees’ rights, it is important to have an experienced employment lawyer represent you. Having a skilled and experienced lawyer representing you will level the playing field against your former employer. Many victims of illegal employment make the mistake of not consulting with an experienced employment lawyer. An employment lawyer can explain your rights, whether you have an employment case, and if so, what damages you may be entitled to receive under the law.

What Protections Do I Have if I File a Discrimination Charge?

It is unlawful to retaliate against an individual for opposing employment practices that discriminate for filing a discrimination charge, testifying, or participating in any way an investigation, proceeding or litigation for unlawful discrimination.

How Will My Discrimination Lawyer Get Paid?

Like most employment law cases, National Origin discrimination cases are typically handled on a contingency fee arrangement. This means that an attorney does not get paid until you recover damages in your case.

Why Should I Hire Douglas, Leonard & Garvey, P.C. as My Discrimination Lawyers?

Many lawyers claim to have employment law experience. Also, many lawyers try to have it both ways and represent employers and employees.

Our loyalty is simple – we represent employees.

Our employment lawyers regularly represent clients at the Department of Labor, EEOC and New Hampshire Human Rights Commission as well as try cases to juries in Superior Court. Please contact us for an immediate, free consultation at 1-800-240-1988 or complete our contact form online.

 

 

What Is Religious Discrimination?

This means that employers are prohibited from discriminating against individuals because of their religion in hiring, firing, and other terms and conditions of the employment.

Can An Employer Treat Me Different Because Of My Religious Beliefs?

Employers may not treat employees or applicants more or less favorable because of their religious beliefs or practices – except to the extent a religious accommodation is warranted.

Can An Employer Refuse To Hire An Employee Because Of Their Religious Affiliation or Belief?

An employer may not refuse to hire individuals of a certain religious affiliation or belief.

Does My Employer Have To Make A Reasonable Accommodation With Regard To Religious Holidays and Customs?

An employer is not required to accommodate an employee’s religious beliefs and practices if doing so would impose an undue hardship on the employer’s legitimate business interests. An employer can show undue hardship if accommodating an employee’s religious practices requires more than ordinary administrative costs, diminishes efficiency in other jobs, infringes on other employees’ job rights or benefits, along with other instances.

Is An Employer Allowed To Limit Religious Expression By Employees?

Employers must permit employees to engage in religious expression, unless the religious expression would impose an undue hardship on the employer. This means that an employer may not place more restrictions on religious expression than on other forms of expression that have a similar effect on workplace efficiency.

What Protections Do I Have if I File a Religious Discrimination Charge?

It is unlawful to retaliate against an individual for opposing employment practices that discriminate for filing a discrimination charge, testifying, or participating in any way an investigation, proceeding or litigation for unlawful  religious discrimination.

What is a Wage and Hour Claim?

Wage and hour disputes can involve issues involving wages, hours, compensation and overtime. They also involve withholding of earned pay as well as the incorrect interpretation of your status under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and state laws.

When Must Overtime be Paid?

Unless exempt by the Fair Labor Standards Act, overtime is paid to hourly employees at the rate of time and one-half of the employee’s regular rate of pay for all hours actually worked over forty (40) in one week.

What is the Main Difference Between Paying on Salary Versus Being Paid by the Hour?

An hourly employee is paid for all time worked including overtime, if applicable. A salaried employee receives a fixed amount of money for compensation regardless of the quantity or quality of the work performed or the number of hours and days which the work is performed.

What is the Minimum Number of Hours Per Day an Employee Must Be Paid When Reporting to Work?

An employee who reports to work at the employer’s request must be paid for a minimum of two (2) hours, unless the employer can contact the employee prior to the employee arriving at work.

When are Wages Due Upon Separation From Employment?

Under New Hampshire law, if an employee quits or resigns, the wages are due by the next regular pay day. However, if the employee is fired, the wages are due within seventy-two (72) hours from the time of the termination.

Am I Entitled to Receive a Copy of My Personnel File?

Yes, an employee, whether present or former employee, must be given access to review or be given a copy of their own personnel file, whether maintained in one or more locations.

What is Considered Retaliation Under the Employment Discrimination Statutes?

An employer is prohibited from taking adverse action against any employee or individual for engaging in “protected activity” under Anti-Discrimination statutes. Adverse actions include, but are not limited to, firing, demotion, refusal to hire or any action which may deter individuals from reporting discriminatory conduct or otherwise engaging in protected activity under discrimination statutes.

What Would Not Be An Adverse Action or Retaliation?

Adverse actions or retaliation, do not include petty slights and annoyances, such as stray negative comments, in an otherwise positive or neutral evaluation, “snubbing” a colleague or negative comments that are justified by an employee’s poor work performance or history.

What Discrimination Actions Have Protection Against Retaliation?

All the laws enforced by the Equal Employment Opportunity or the New Hampshire Commission for Human Rights provide protection against retaliation. The American for Disabilities Act also protect individuals from coercion, intimidation, threat, harassment, or interference in their exercise of their own rights and their encouragement of someone else’s exercise of rights.

What Is the Main Purpose of a Severance Agreement?

The main purpose of Severance Agreements for the employer is to obtain a waiver of all your rights so that you are not able to sue the employer after you leave your employment. Typically, the employer offers to pay you compensation or wages to get you sign the Severance Agreement. The employer’s goal with the Severance Agreement is to protect its own interests

Who Drafts the Severance Agreement?

Severance Agreements are drafted by the employer or the employer’s lawyers. It is important to keep in mind that the Severance Agreement contains terms that is designed primarily to protect the interests of the employer.

Does My Employer Have to Offer Me Severance Pay?

Under New Hampshire law, an employer does not have to offer severance unless there is a policy. Offering severance is different that if you are owed vacation pay or sick time after you are being separated from employment.

Is a Non-Compete Agreement Part of a Severance Agreement?

It depends on the lawyer drafting the Severance Agreement. Sometimes a company and its lawyer will try to include a non-compete agreement as a part of any Severance Agreement being offered to you. It is important to be aware of that because that provision could affect your ability to work for a competitor or even to start your own business.

Can My Employer Pressure Me Into Signing a Severance Agreement?

No. But employers sometimes do try to pressure employees to sign Severance Agreements. It is understandable that you may be facing a financial hardship but you need to take the time to review all terms of the Severance Agreement with an experienced employment lawyer. Depending on the specifics of your case, some Severance Agreements provide a certain time period in order to allow you to review the Severance Agreement as well as containing a limited time period for you to revoke your acceptance of the Severance Agreement.

Can I Sue My Employer For Overtime & Wage Claims?

Yes, an employee can bring a wage claim at the NH Department of Labor or in NH Superior Court.

 

We Are In Association With