Wage discrimination occurs when an employee is being unfairly compensated for their work compared to other employees. All employees have the right to be free from discrimination in their wage compensation under federal employment laws.
Wage discrimination laws protect employees for all types of payments related to employment such as:
Under the Equal Pay Act, men and women have the right to be paid equally when the job is equal. Men and women should not be paid unequally when they perform jobs that require equal skill, experience, effort, and responsibility when both men and women perform the same set of work under similar working conditions within the same company.
An employer can commit wage discrimination when they treat and/or pay employees differently based on a protected characteristic. Wage discrimination can occur in several ways:
The Equal Pay Act covers all employees since the law regulates the conduct of state, federal, and local governments. To successfully make a claim under the Equal Pay Act, an employee who believes they have been wrongfully discriminated and is being paid unequally or differently must prove:
Sometimes a company pays a whole group a lower wage. In a class action suit, several employees who feel that they have been discriminated against can join forces and ask a judge to allow the case to be a class-action suit. Women can sue under both the Equal Pay Act and Title VII. A group that feels they have been given a lower wage because of their race or color, religion, pregnancy or childbirth, or national origin can sue under Title VII.
Recently, a ruling in a federal court concluded that a suit against a company can be tried as a nationwide class-action lawsuit. The employees suing had shown that there were significant issues concerning the company’s discriminatory practices. The employees claimed that women were paid less in all store locations, and that promotions were harder to come by for female employees.
A class-action lawsuit against an employer is difficult to pursue without an employment lawyer. As in all employment discrimination suits, you have to decide if a claim should be filed under the Equal Pay Act or under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 or under both. This can be difficult without an attorney experienced in class-action discrimination suits.
Last Modified: 11-18-2014 12:48 PM PSTLaw Library Disclaimer
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