Work can be challenging enough without employees having to deal with issues such as harassment, discrimination, not receiving proper pay, or retaliation for reporting unsafe or illegal behavior. Unfortunately, many employees find themselves in these dilemmas too often with coworkers, supervisors, or even a company-wide policy.

To understand what your rights are and know what steps you can take to protect yourself, eliminate problems, and potentially get compensation for any harm you suffered, contact the experienced employment attorneys at Walton Law, APC today.

Bringing a Wage and Hour Lawsuit

Federal and state laws govern hours and overtime, rest and meal breaks, and minimum wage you should be paid as a nonexempt employee. Assuming you are not exempt from wage and hour laws, your employer should pay you overtime at the legal rate when you work more than eight hours in a day or forty hours in a week.

If you are an employee who was not properly paid, you may be entitled to sue for wage and hour violations and receive overtime and back pay. Some companies try to avoid complying with wage and hour laws and other protections enacted to protect workers by misclassifying employees. For instance, they may label an hourly employee as a salaried employee or an independent contractor in order to get out of providing the benefits to which nonexempt employees are entitled.


You are entitled to work in a place free from discrimination. Under federal and state laws, discrimination occurs whenever an employer takes an adverse employment action based on an employee’s protected trait, whether that adverse action involves termination, providing disparate pay, failure to promote, or failure to hire. Protected traits include race, national origin, age, religion, sex, and disability, among others.

For example, if you were fired for requesting a reasonable accommodation for your physical disability, or if you were terminated because you are nearing retirement, you may be able to sue for compensation.

Harassment at Work

When you go to work, you likely do not anticipate that you’ll be harassed for a personal trait. Most people know about sexual harassment, but in fact, harassment based on many different characteristics is prohibited when it creates a hostile work environment.

Retaliation and Wrongful Termination Protections

Many times, employees are fearful of intimidation or retaliation if they have a problem and so they fail to say anything or take action to correct the situation. Even in an “at will” state where most employers can terminate employees for any reason, there are exceptions to that rule. Employers are not allowed to retaliate by firing or failing to promote an employee:

  • Because they engaged in a protected activity such as filing a wage and hour or discrimination claim.
  • In retaliation for whistleblower activities.
  • In violation of whistleblower protections under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.
  • As retaliation for a qui tam lawsuit filed on behalf of the government alleging fraud. embezzlement, or theft of government funds by the company.
  • In violation of the federal Fair Employment and Housing Act.

Family and Medical Leave

Many workers are entitled to family and medical leave when certain criteria is met, such as when an employer is of a certain size and the worker is expecting a child or has to take care of a family member with a serious illness. Taking adverse actions against an employee in retaliation for triggering this protected right would be improper and actionable.

Contact a Seasoned Employment Lawyer

You may be confused about what rights you possess in the workplace. If you may need to go up against your employer, you should get in touch with lawyers you can trust.

At Walton Law, APC, we have years of experience helping clients through difficult disputes with the companies that employ them. Call us at (866) 338-7079 or complete our contact page to schedule a free initial confidential case review today.