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Employees’ Legal Rights in Illinois

On Behalf of | Dec 25, 2013 | Firm News

As an employee in Illinois, you are entitled to work in a hazard-free, discrimination-free environment. Every employer has legal obligations to their employees. The Chicago employment and discrimination lawyers at Goldman & Ehrlich can offer invaluable guidance to employees who feel their rights are being violated by their employer.

Specific Legal Rights of Illinois Employees

Legal rights of employees include:

  • The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulate the safety standards of industries throughout Pennsylvania and across the country. If you find evidence that your place of employment is unsafe, you can file a complaint with OSHA. An employer is not legally allowed to seek revenge on an employee who reports an issue to OSHA.
  • If you are injured while at work or develop a work-related illness, you can file a workers compensation claim. If you suffer a long-term or permanent disability, you may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI).
  • Employees are eligible for unpaid family and medical leave up to twelve weeks in Pennsylvania if you have worked the required time period prior to the leave. Upon returning to work, you must be given your original position.
  • All employees have the legal right to work in an environment that is free from sexual harassment, discriminatory behavior and abusive behavior.

If your legal rights have been violated by your employer, you should enlist the legal counsel of an employment lawyer at Goldman & Ehrlich.

Illinois Termination Laws

Illinois is an at-will state, meaning that an employer may terminate an employee for any legal reason without cause or warning. If you have an employment contract that details the grounds for dismissal, that contract must be followed.

Chicago Employment Discrimination Lawyers

Goldman & Ehrlich Attorneys at Law have Chicago’s most reputable employment discrimination lawyers. If your legal rights have been violated, you should schedule a free consultation with our firm. We will advise you on the legal recourse you should follow. Call today.

“At-Will” Employment, What Does That Really Mean?

Beginning in June, 2011, Montana became the only state in the U.S. not participating in the “At-Will” Employment Law in some form.  What does that really mean?  It simply means that an employer may terminate any employee at any time, including their first day of employment, providing the employer is not violating the law, which prevents them from terminating an employee based upon race, gender, country of origin, ethnicity, any disability, religion, or any other type of discrimination.

“At-Will” Law Exceptions

There are exceptions to the at-will laws, and include a contractual agreement between an employee and the employer whereby the employer has agreed to hire an employee for a certain length of time.  If the employer fails to live up to this agreement and terminates the employee, the employee may sue the employer for wrongful termination.

Another exception to the at-will laws may include a company’s written handbook which may be perceived as a contract between an employer and their employees.  Most companies are careful to avoid verbiage that could be interpreted as an agreement to employ an individual for a certain period of time, including a probationary period.  In addition, many handbooks include a signature page for the employee to sign agreeing that they understand the handbook does not imply they are promised employment with the company for a specific amount of time, nor has anyone employed by the company promised them, orally, or in writing, a certain timeframe for employment.

Regardless of how an employer handbook is written, the at-will employment laws do not exempt an employee from suing a company for illegal or wrongful termination.

Chicago Employment Representation

Goldman & Ehrlich Law Firm in Chicago, Illinois has a team of experts that have a thorough understanding of the at-will employment laws, and they will fight for your rights.  Contact Goldman & Ehrlich today if you believe your employment rights have been violated

What is Considered Workplace Bullying in Chicago

Stories regarding children, teens, and college students being bullied at school are prominent in the news, but stories regarding bullying in the workplace are rarely published. However, this type of behavior occurs more often than most employers care to admit.

What is considered workplace bullying?  Bullying in the workplace often occurs when an individual is singled out by anyone in a position of authority over another individual, and treated in a demeaning, intimidating, embarrassing, or threatening manner.  Some businesses also appear to ignore bullying of an individual by a co-worker allowing the bullying to become rampant throughout the company.

Bullying in the workplace occurs when:

  • A supervisor or other person in authority intimidates an individual employee by yelling or using an abusive tone or language in communicating with that individual.
  • An individual employee is consistently criticized or blamed for mistakes made by others without justification.
  • An individual is intentionally excluded, or uninvited from business events that would normally include them.
  • An individual’s high performance is deliberately ignored.
  • An individual is consistently the brunt of practical jokes.

Unfortunately, many supervisors exhibit poor management and social skills in the workplace, and when their behavior affects several employees, it is not considered workplace bullying unless they single out an employee and behave differently towards him or her.

Many employees fear losing their jobs, or being further ridiculed if they report workplace bullying, and this does occur when negative behavior is ignored and allowed to go unabated.

Employment Law Representation in Chicago, IL

Contact Goldman & Ehrlich, employment attorneys in Chicago, IL to discuss your concerns regarding workplace bullying affecting you or someone you know.