Employees can seek damages for employment discrimination. Here’s what to ask for in an employment discrimination settlement.

Any employee who is a victim of employment discrimination or retaliation loses in more aspects than just financially. The United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s goal is to get the victim of the discrimination in the same position they would have been if the discrimination had never occurred. (For example, if an employee was denied hiring to a position because of discrimination, the remedy may be the rightful placing of the individual at that position of employment.) Additionally, their goal is to compensate the employee who suffered retaliation or discrimination in all aspects that they have been wronged.

What are the Remedies for Employment Retaliation/Discrimination?

Any individual seeking a workplace retaliation settlement in California must be aware of what remedies can be pursued in an employment discrimination settlement. Here are some of the damages an individual can be compensated for if they sue for a workplace retaliation settlement.

1. Any economic damages due to the retaliation.

The economic damages include all of the economic losses caused by the employer’s retaliation, such as back wages, front wages, and any other lost wages. Additionally, if the retaliation has prevented the suing employee from obtaining a promotion or any kind of career growth, an expert can be used to evaluate what kind of cost is owed back to them.

2. All non-economic damages due to the retaliation.

These damages can include any emotional distress the employee has suffered from any of the discriminatory or retaliatory behavior that has been inflicted on the. It is recommended for an employee seeking compensation for the emotional suffering they have been subject to keep detailed records of all of this behavior that demonstrates the emotional distress, in order to provide a strong testimony in just how this has negatively affected them.

3. Punitive damages

Punitive damages are designed to punish the employer for this maltreatment against the employee and are only available in particularly egregious cases. An employee seeking punitive damages against their employer must meet a higher standard of proof than just retaliation. A judge is able to determine the amount of punitive damages they deem fit for the employer for the given situation.

4. Attorney fees and the costs of the lawsuit.

An employee will receive a payment based on the amount of time the attorney spent on the case, and the amount of money both the attorney and the employee spent on the case. Thus, if the payment awarded is enough to cover the costs of the attorney, then the suing employee has just won their case with an attorney free of charge.

An employee should consider these outcomes when deciding to sue for a workplace retaliation settlement and know they are entitled to any of these remedies when suing for employee discrimination.

Related: How to File an Employment Discrimination Complaint

Are There Any Limits on Punitive Damages?

Yes, an employer is restricted from paying a certain amount based on the number of employees they have. Here are all of the punitive damage limits placed on employers by the size of their staff:

  • For employers with 15-100 employees, the limit is $50,000.
  • For employers, with 101-200 employees, the limit is $100,000.
  • For employers with 201-500 employees, the limit is $200,000.
  • For employers with more than 500 employees, the limit is $300,000.

Related: What Are Punitive Damages & When Are They Awarded?

How Much Financial Compensation is Granted for Emotional Distress

Generally, personal insurance claims will compensate an employee for emotional distress, which is included under non-economic damages. Although getting an insurance company to financially compensate an employee for emotional distress may seem difficult, there is a system they follow to calculate how much the damage would cost. Here is how insurance companies calculate emotional distress damages:

  • Insurance companies begin by adding up the hard costs, or the total expenses related to the emotional damage.
    • These hard costs can be any medical bills acquired for the emotional distress, out-of-pocket medical expenses relating to it, and any lost wages because of the emotional damage.
  • Then insurance companies will multiply the total of the economic losses by 1 or 2 to estimate the pain and suffering payout.
    • The result is the total amount that the employee can demand in a final settlement. This is deemed the “multiple method”.
    • For example, if the economic damages add up to $2,000, an insurance company can add 1.5 times that amount ($3,000) to account for the non-economic damages. Then the total demand for compensation would be $5,000.

Related: Workers’ Compensation Claims for Emotional Distress

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If you or a loved one would like to know more about what to ask for in an employment discrimination settlement, get your free consultation with one of our Employment Discrimination Attorneys today!