New Jersey LGBT workplace discrimination

Why You Shouldn’t Wait to Pursue Your Workplace Discrimination Case

By Thomas McKinney

To bring a successful New Jersey discrimination lawsuit, you will need to prove that you were a member of a protected class, which includes race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, national origin, and more. Additionally, you will need evidence to support the assertion that you suffered an adverse employment action based on your membership in that protected class. An adverse employment action may include termination, demotion, reduction in pay, or reduction in hours, among other things. On top of all of this, you will need evidence that, if your employer put forth a legitimate reason for the adverse employment action, this reason was actually merely a pretext for discrimination. You will also need to make sure that you file your discrimination claim in a timely manner or risk waiving your right to bring the action altogether.

Why You Shouldn’t Wait to Pursue Your Workplace Discrimination Case

As you can see, bringing a workplace discrimination case can be complicated and involved, but it can also be critical to enforcing your rights and rectifying a serious wrong that occurred. Regardless of whether you have the evidence to support a successful workplace discrimination claim or not, however, you will need to be sure that proper procedure in filing your claim is followed and that includes filing your claim before the statute of limitations runs out.

A statute of limitations is a time limit on the ability to pursue a legal claim. Once the statute of limitations runs out, a court is unlikely to allow the claim to proceed. So, you will have essentially waived your right to seek a remedy for your legal grievance. In general, the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination places a two-year statute of limitations for claims regarding workplace discrimination or retaliation. The two-year statute of limitations begins to run from the date on which the adverse employment action which supports the basis of the claim occurs. In other words, you must file your lawsuit within two years of the adverse employment action, such as being fired or demoted, or the last act in a pattern of harassment.

If you should try to file your claim after the two-year statute of limitations runs out, it likely will not matter what evidence you have to support your workplace discrimination claim. A court is unlikely to let you proceed with even presenting said evidence. Because there is so much at stake, filing your discrimination case sooner, rather than later, is often advised. The running of a statute of limitations carries serious consequences and there are few exceptions.

One of the bigger exceptions to the statute of limitations on discrimination claims in New Jersey was carved out by the New Jersey Supreme Court. Is referred to as the “discovery rule.” The discover rule is applicable in cases where an employee was unaware that they suffered an adverse employment action, or that someone else was to blame for the adverse employment action, until after the statute of limitations passed.

Employment Law Attorneys

If you suspect you have been a victim of workplace discrimination, time is of the essence. Do not wait to reach out to the dedicated employment law team at Castronovo & McKinney. Contact us today.

About the Author
Tom McKinney is an experienced NJ Employment Lawyer in all major areas of labor and employment law, including discrimination, harassment, overtime violations, wage and hour claims, sexual harassment, wrongful discharge, Title VII, ADA, ADEA, FMLA, LAD, FLSA, and all other employment law claims. Tom is admitted to practice in the States of New Jersey and New York, United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, Southern District of New York, District of New Jersey, and United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Prior to forming the firm, Tom practiced at Gibbons P.C. in Newark, NJ. If you have any questions regarding this article, contact Tom here today.