Recently, a federal judge in Texas issued a ruling prohibiting Texas employers from discriminating against employees based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. Although the plaintiff in that case was ultimately unsuccessful in establishing a case of Texas sexual orientation discrimination, the decision paved the way for gender-identity discrimination lawsuits.
Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, certain qualifying employers are not allowed to discriminate or harass an employee based on that person’s sex. Discrimination covers all aspects of employment, including things such as termination, hiring, promotions, and benefits.
More and more advocates are beginning to speak out about gender identity and the related discrimination many of these individuals face in their professional and personal lives. Historically, Title VII has not protected these individuals from discrimination by their employers; however, recent cases have begun to change the tide in how these cases are handled.
The decision was based on a lawsuit filed by a woman who alleged that she was not hired by an energy company because she was transgender. Ultimately, the judge ruled that the woman could not prove that the company’s decision was based on the fact that she was transgender, but if she could, she would have an actionable case. Although the plaintiff was disappointed in the ruling, the broader impact of the decision will allow employees to file lawsuits when they have been subjected to discrimination because of their gender identity. This ruling was the first of its kind in Texas, since no other Texas federal judge has stated that employers cannot discriminate against LGBT workers under Title VII.
How to File a Lawsuit Based on Title VII in Texas
If an individual believes they have faced discrimination because of their gender identity or sexual orientation, the first step is to file a claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The EEOC will then conduct an investigation and provide notice to the employer. In the event that the employee wants to sue their employer prior to the completion of the investigation, they must request that separately. If the employer receives the notice, the lawsuit must be filed within 90 days, or they will not be able to file a lawsuit.
These cases are often complex and require a significant amount of knowledge regarding federal employment law and various statutes and regulations. It is important that employees who have experienced discrimination contact a Texas employment lawyer in order to preserve their right to pursue their claim.
Have You Been Subjected to Discrimination Based on Your Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity?
If you have been mistreated by your employer, you should contact the Texas discrimination attorneys at Rob Wiley, P.C. The law firm of Rob Wiley, P.C. is comprised of dedicated and knowledgeable Dallas sexual orientation discrimination lawyers who have years of experience handling Texas employment discrimination cases. Our attorneys can make sure that your lawsuit is properly prepared and complies with all of the necessary state and federal requirements. They can assist you in all of the steps of your lawsuit and will do everything they can to ensure that you get the relief that you deserve. Contact the office today at 214-528-6500 to schedule your free initial consultation.
More Blog Posts:
Can government workers be fired for exercising their right to free speech?, Dallas Employment Lawyer Blog, February 2, 2018.
How a Texas Employee Can Prove a Case of Employment Discrimination, Dallas Employment Lawyer Blog, May 2, 2018.