How do I know if I’m I being discriminated against?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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How do I know if I’m I being discriminated against?

My employer is going to fire me over something that everyone else in the same department does. I was pulled into an office, stripped of my badge and told not to come back or talk to anyone until they call. I have seen numerous violations that others have done, along with a violation my HIPPA rights. We are moving to a new location and feel like they’re are forcing me out because of my MS. I’m not as fast and strong as I use to be but do above average work for my company.

Asked on October 11, 2018 under Employment Labor Law, Iowa


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

As a general rule, an employer may treat some employees differently or worse than others and that is legal: there is no law requiring fair or evenhanded treatement. 
But as with all things legal, there are exceptions. One exception is that an employer may not treat an employee differently or worse due to certain defined reasons, one of which is an employee medical condition or disability--such as MS.
If you have MS and believe you have been performing at least (or above) average and are not aware of any other grounds or reasons to terminate you, that may well be discrimination. Do you *know* it's discrimination at this point? No--the company will get a chance to prove there is some non-discriminatory reason for their action, such as if you have fewer qualifications or credentials than other employees, or if they can show your performance is measurably worse. But you have stated enough to bring a claim to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC): contact them to file a complaint and let them look into this. As stated, you employer wil have a chance to prove it's non-discriminatory, but based on what you write, they should have to provide evidence of a non-discriminatory reason. If they cannot to this, then this may be illegal discrimination and you may be entitled to compensation.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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