We often get inquiries from our clients as to whether they should pursue a claim for wages because they fear retaliation by their employer. Remember that the law protects employees from retaliation for pursuing their rights and allows for additional damages and attorneys fees if you are demoted, receive a pay cut, are fired, etc. for pursuing such claims. The courts have been split as to whether an employee’s informal inquiry regarding wages triggers protection from retaliation. Well, the Supreme Court is now weighing in. The Court will decide the following question: “Is an oral complaint of a violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act protected conduct under the anti-retaliation provision, 29 U.S.C. § 215(a)(3)?”
Stay tuned for the result. This will be (we hope) yet another step toward protecting employee rights in the workplace. The case name is Kasten v. Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics Corp., (7th Cir 07/29/2009).