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Never retaliate for any past EEOC cooperation

Here’s a warning to share with supervisors: If they find out an employee has participated in an EEOC investigation as a witness in the past, you cannot punish him for that protected activity.

Long Island company settles EEOC bias case for $407,000

West Babylon-based A&F Fire Protection Co. Inc. has agreed to pay a class of black and Hispanic employees $407,000 to compensate them for blatant racial discrimination, harassment and retaliation.

Transfer after taking FMLA leave? That could be considered retaliation

If you transfer an employee soon after she has returned from FMLA leave, you could wind up facing an FMLA retaliation lawsuit. And as long as the employee can show the transfer was motivated by the use of FMLA leave, she can take a lawsuit to a jury.

Document promotion process to show you chose the best

Employers that follow their own rules and maintain accurate and complete records of their promotion decisions generally win failure-to-promote cases.

Prepare to pay up when retaliation is alleged

Even if you win an employment discrimination case, you may end up losing if someone foolishly retaliates against the employee for complaining in the first place.

Before signing settlement, consider other filings

Sometimes, an employee files several discrimination complaints about incidents that are allegedly related. If you’re thinking about settling one complaint, be aware that other, related claims may remain outstanding.

Good faith wins, even if you might have been wrong

Courts almost never second-guess employers’ decisions—even dubious ones—as long as they are confident the decisions were made in good faith.

Protect against future lawsuits by documenting details of every complaint

Employees who complain about alleged discriminatory practices to their supervisors, HR or anyone else inside the organization in a position of authority are protected from retaliation for doing so. But they have to later show that they actually did at least mention discrimination.

Document why you decided not to rehire

Sometimes, employers let employees gracefully leave instead of being fired. But what if the former employee later applies for a new opening?

Ensure your records show exactly when personnel decisions were made

To prove retaliation, employees must show that the employer took some form of adverse action against them after they complained. That’s one reason employers must document all personnel decisions: So they can later tell a court exactly when an allegedly adverse action took place.