Race Discrimination FAQ
Discrimination based on race is unfortunately still prevalent in today’s workplace. Questions of what conduct or actions are considered discriminatory often arise when you feel you are being mistreated at work. Additionally, if you have suffered discrimination because of your race, you might wonder what your legal options are. Orange County race discrimination attorneys at the Serendib Law Firm can help you determine your next legal step. However, to start with, these are the most commonly asked questions in evaluating your race discrimination case.
- How is Discrimination Defined?
- What Doesn't Qualify as Illegal Discrimination?
- What Actions or Behavior are Considered Discriminatory?
- What do I do If I am a Victim of Workplace Discrimination?
- What Laws Protect Me From Race Discrimination?
- What are the Legal Claims I Have if I Have Suffered Discrimination?
- How Much Will My Discrimination Lawsuit Be Worth?
- What is the Statute of Limitations for a Race Discrimination Claim?
- Who can I Talk to About My Race Discrimination Lawsuit?
Racial discrimination at work occurs when an employee is treated unfavorably because of their race. For example, if an employee is consistently denied a promotion, despite seniority and outstanding job performance while employees of another race move to higher positions, unlawful discrimination might be the reason.
If adverse employment actions are taken because of personality conflicts between coworkers or bad management, it may be unfair but it generally is not illegal. To show unlawful race discrimination there must be evidence that the actions were motived, at least in part, due to your race.
Some examples of race discrimination in the workplace include comments or ‘jokes’ regarding your race, being denied promotions or being terminated over another coworker with less experience but who is outside your protected class. If you believe you’ve been discriminated against, contact an Orange County racial discrimination lawyer as soon as possible who can advise you of your legal rights.
Generally, the first step is to send a written complaint to your employer. This complaint should be professional and specifically set out the key facts of what has occurred, without drawing legal conclusions or threatening legal actions.
If reporting racial discrimination within your company is met with inaction, or hostility, the next step might be filing a complaint with the Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), followed by a discrimination lawsuit if necessary.
Under federal law, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which applies to employers with at least 15 employees, prohibits racial discrimination. The California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), however, is more favorable to more employees, applying to employers with at least five employees. Additionally, California recently enacted a state law that prohibits race discrimination that includes discrimination based on texture and protective hairstyles as traits that have a historic connection to race. A knowledgeable race discrimination attorney in Orange County will be able to determine which legal avenue offers the most protection for you.
Aside from a claim for race discrimination, you may also have claims for creation of a hostile work environment or retaliation. Retaliation refers to any adverse actions an employer takes against an employee for engaging in a protected activity, such as reporting discriminatory practices. These actions may include terminating employees as well as making their work environment so unbearable, the employee is unable to perform their job, which also gives rise to a hostile work environment claim.
Each claim is different depending on the situation, and therefore each victim will receive varying compensation depending on their circumstances. Damages for both economic and non-economic losses could be awarded in these cases. An employee who has been discriminated against may be entitled to back and front pay, as well as lost benefits, emotional distress, or pain and suffering damages.
Under California’s FEHA, employees have three years from the date of discrimination, retaliation, or harassment occurred within which to file a lawsuit.
The race discrimination attorneys at the Serendib Law Firm assist clients throughout Orange County and elsewhere in Southern California with all employment-related claims. If you have further questions about your legal rights, or need help establishing a case against your employer, contact our office today at 1-800-LAW-8225 (800-529-8825) or online to find out more about our legal services. We also represent victims of discrimination in Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and Riverside Counties.