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Heres a scenario. An employee is working for a construction…

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Here's a scenario. An employee...
Here's a scenario. An employee is working for a construction company. This employee attends an belongs to the same church as his employers. During the course of his employment this employee decides he wants to leave this church. Upset because there employee left the church that they belong to his employers become offended and fire him in revenge. Does this violate the employee's rights? Bearing in mind that this situation was never discussed between the employers and employee? And also that the employee never signed any type of disclaimer paper when he started working for this business? Please send me an email [email protected]
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Employment Law
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Answered in 8 minutes by:
6/28/2010
Employment Lawyer: Marsha411JD, Lawyer replied 8 years ago
Marsha411JD
Marsha411JD, Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 20,988
Experience: Licensed Attorney with 29 yrs. exp in Employment Law
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Hello,

Although New York is an employment at will state, which means that an employer can terminate an employee for any, or no, reason and with no notice, that right is not without restrictions. If the termination violates an employment contract, company policy or discrimination law, then it is unlawful and creates a right to pursue for wrongful termination. So, without knowing if you had an employment contract that was violated or there was some sort of company policy that gave you more rights than the general law, for example a right to warnings or stepped discipline, you do appear to have at least a prima facia case of religious discrimination. In other words, if your decision about where or how you wanted to observe your religious beliefs was indeed the reason that you were terminated, then that is a violation of both Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and of New York law.

If you want to pursue any possible legal claims, then you can either file a complaint with the EEOC or with the NY Division of Human Rights, or you can file suit directly under the laws that apply. Before deciding what you want to do, you will want to consult with a local employment law firm that has experience with discrimination cases and with whom you can discuss all the particulars of your case. That way they can give you their objective opinion about your options, including whether or not you should pursue the case in a Federal or State forum, depending on the attitudes of the local judiciary and juries.
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