Is it discrimination if I applied for a seniority position within a company and got it but I’m told now that I can’t have the position because my mother also works there?

I told human resources of others in similar situations within company, some in leadership roles over family. This has cost me a job and I feel discriminated against. What are my legal options?

Asked on July 15, 2015 under Employment Labor Law, Indiana


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 5 years ago | Contributor

No, this situation does not constitute a case of employment discrimination. An actionable case would be because you were treated differently than other employess due to your race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, national origin physical/mental disability or age. Otherwise your treatemnt was not illegal.

If, however, you had an employment contract, union agreement, etc. that was been violated by your treatment, then you would have a case. Also, this action must not have run counter to company policy.

Most employment relationships are "at will", which means that an employer can set the terms and conditions of the workplace as it sees fit. This includes who to promote or not promote and why.

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