Tennessee Employment Law

Nashville Employment Lawyers Discuss Three Common Workplace Disputes

by Staff Blogger | March 11th, 2015

Employers in Tennessee have a right to hire and terminate employees at will, there are certain laws that protect workers in our state from being treated inappropriately on the job or paid unfair wages. The Nashville employment lawyers with Ponce Law explain there are three common violations of these laws:

  1. DiscriminationUnfair treatment of an employee due to his or her age, sex, gender, religion, or ethnicity is strictly forbidden in the Tennessee workplace. Individuals may also be discriminated due to sexual preference or a disability as well. The latter is specifically prohibited under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
  2. Wage DisputesState law protects workers from being required to work more than 40 hours per week without overtime pay. It also establishes the minimum wage an employer can pay workers. Any failure to abide by these regulations can result in a civil lawsuit.
  3. Sexual HarassmentThe Tennessee Employment Law Center explains that any sort of unwelcome sexual advance, conduct, or request is considered discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Furthermore, any act or conduct that significantly interferes with a worker’s performance and creates a hostile, intimidating, or offensive work setting can be considered sexual harassment.

If you’ve been the victim of an employer’s misconduct, it’s important to know that help is available. At Ponce Law, our legal staff is standing by to assist you any way we can, whether it’s answering your questions or helping you start the Tennessee employment dispute claims process. We can be reached by calling (800) 363-9113 anytime.

How Does the Tennessee Healthy Workplace Act Protect Workers?

by Staff Blogger | February 11th, 2015

Many Tennesseans get along well with their bosses and coworkers, but some deal with abuse, discrimination, and bullying on the job. The Nashville employment lawyers with Ponce Law want anyone who is the victim of such behaviors to know there are laws protecting you and help is available.

An article from The Wall Street Journal reports that last year, Tennessee passed a law called the Healthy Workplace Act. This piece of legislation states that individual employees in the public sector can be held liable for abusive or discriminatory acts. Furthermore, the law encourages organizations to create policies that will curb bullying, sexual harassment, and other such behaviors.

Having legislation like this on the books is one thing, but holding those who break Tennessee employment laws accountable for their actions is another. The process of filing a claim, presenting evidence, negotiating a settlement, and even going to trial can be complicated.

At Ponce Law, we have years of experience helping employees who have been harmed on the job get the compensation they deserve, and our lawyers have the knowledge to help answer your questions about discrimination or abuse on the job in Tennessee. Call us today at (800) 363-9113.

 

Changes Made to Tennessee Workplace Discrimination Law

by Staff Blogger | July 11th, 2014

The law prohibits employers from unfairly treating or terminating employees based on factors such as religion, sex, race, or sexual orientation. Violations of these laws can result in lawsuits against employers.

In the past, an employee who faced Tennessee workplace discrimination could seek both compensatory and punitive damages by filing a lawsuit. However, there have been several changes made to Tennessee state law that limit the awards that can now be received by employees who face discrimination at work.

An article from Mondaq explains that on July 1, reforms were made to the Tennessee Human Rights Act and the Tennessee Public Protection Act. These changes limit the amount of compensatory damages employees can receive for damages like emotional distress or humiliation. Furthermore, employers that discriminate no longer face the threat of punitive damages.

The standards for proof for whistleblower cases in the state have also been altered. Now, a whistleblower must make a complaint about their mistreatment to a person outside of the company. They must also prove their claims of illegal activity are the reason for their termination or mistreatment at the workplace.

At Ponce Law, we understand the intricacies of employment law in Tennessee, and we are here to answer any questions you may have about employment disputes. Call our team of Nashville personal injury lawyers today.

Tennessee Working to Address Construction Industry Employment Fraud

by Staff Blogger | June 9th, 2014

The construction industry can be one of the most dangerous lines of work for workers. These risks can be complicated further when employers cut corners on safety and following proper legal procedures to save money.

Some of the most common cases of employer fraud include:

  • Paying workers untaxed with cash
  • Underreporting wages that are paid
  • Misclassifying workers to avoid insurance payments

Working under these conditions can be extremely detrimental to a worker because it can exclude them from coverage under benefits such as Tennessee workers’ compensation or Social Security Disability when accidents occur.

The state’s Department of Labor is working to end these types of employment disputes though by investigating a number of the area’s construction firms and cracking down on offenses. The campaign is being called a success with the program recently getting its first settlement.

News Channel 5 explains a drywall business based in Nashville will pay $300,000 to settle claims they lied about the number of employees on their payroll to save money on insurance.

If you’re hurt while working under suspected illegal conditions, speaking with a qualified Nashville personal injury lawyer can help you get the compensation you deserve. At Ponce Law, we’re here to help. Call us to speak with a member of our legal staff today.

Tennessee Legislators Consider Changes to State Lunch Break Laws

by Staff Blogger | January 22nd, 2014

January 22, 2014

One of the most important tools in keeping United States workers safe while on-the-job is ensuring employees are not overworked and get plenty of rest. The Nashville Personal Injury Lawyers with Ponce Law explain this is precisely why controversy is swirling around a proposed change to Tennessee employment law.

According to a story from WBIR 10 News, a bill being considered by state legislators would allow for employees who work a shift longer than six hours to waive their right to a 30-minute lunch break that is currently required by law. Last year, a law was passed that exempted employees who work for tips, such as wait staff and bartenders, to forgo the break.

Those in favor of the change say it could improve worker morale by giving employees more options, such as getting off 30-minutes early. Opponents of the reform say it not only puts workers at a greater danger of injury due to mistakes that are made because of a lack of a break, but also opens the doors for employers to find ways to force workers into skipping breaks. Such requirements could also lead to Tennessee Wage Disputes.

Debate in the matter is expected to continue through the current legislative session.

The attorneys with Michael D. Ponce & Associates encourage citizens to share their opinions with their state congressmen.