- What should I do if I think I am being discriminated against, harassed, or retaliated against in the workplace?
- I applied for a job. They didn’t hire me because I “failed” the background check. Can they do that?
- Can I have an age discrimination case if I am under 40?
- What can I get out of an employment discrimination case, how much is my employment discrimination case worth?
It may sound biased, but if you believe you are being discriminated against, harassed, or retaliated against in the workplace, contact an employment law attorney. You owe it to yourself to talk to an employment law attorney about your situation.
The answer is, it depends. The Wisconsin Fair Employment Act (WFEA) makes it an act of unlawful discrimination to refuse to hire an applicant because of his/her conviction record. However, there is an exception called the substantial relationship exception to conviction record discrimination. If an offense in your background check is substantially related to the position you applied for, the employer can deny you the position. There is not time limit, it doesn’t matter how long ago the offense occurred.
Whether or not a conviction is substantially related to a position is debatable. Consult an employment law attorney about the specifics of your situation to determine if you have a case. Attorney James Walcheske is among the top conviction record discrimination attorneys in Wisconsin. Contact him immediately if you have been denied any job based on your conviction record or the results of a background check.
Unfortunately, under both the Wisconsin Fair Employment Act and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), individuals are only protected from age discrimination once they turn 40. So, if you are under 40-years-old, you are not protected.
There is no easy answer to this question, as a case’s “worth” is literally a case-by-case analysis. No two people’s damages are exactly the same.
That said, damages that an individual is generally entitled to are back pay (lost wages), reinstatement (reemployment if you lost your job), and attorney fees and costs. At the federal level, an individual can also attempt to obtain compensatory damages (pain and suffering) and punitive damages (damages assessed against the employer as a punishment), although individuals are not entitled to such damages.
If you have been handling a case by yourself and an employer has contacted you to schedule a mediation or discuss settlement, you should heavily consider, and we would recommend, speaking with an employment law attorney.