Georgia Labor Laws

Unfair and unlawful treatment in the workplace can negatively impact your career. It can also damage your state of mind. If you believe your employer denied you wages, retaliated against you, fostered a hostile work environment, or violated your rights in another way, Morgan & Morgan is here to help.

Our labor and employment attorneys represent Georgia workers who have been discriminated against, harassed, wrongfully terminated, or otherwise treated unjustly. Schedule a free, no-risk case evaluation to find out if you may be entitled to compensation for your hardship.

Wage & Hour Violations

Both the state of Georgia and the federal government have wage and hour laws designed to ensure employees receive sufficient pay for their work.

  • Minimum Wage: In Georgia, the minimum wage is $5.15/hour. However, with some exceptions, employers are required to pay their employees the federal minimum wage ($7.25/hour as of 2020).
  • Overtime: Per the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), non-exempt employees must be paid time-and-a-half (1.5x their normal pay) for all hours worked above 40 in a week. 
  • Breaks: Georgia employers are not required to provide meal or rest breaks. However, employees who are granted short breaks during the day must be paid for that time.

Despite these laws, some employers deny their employees their rightful pay through dishonest and deceitful methods, such as:

  • Paying less than the minimum wage
  • Giving “comp time” rather than overtime pay
  • Misclassifying workers as exempt from overtime pay
  • Forcing workers to pool their tips with non-tipped workers

Workplace Discrimination

Federal discrimination laws prohibit employers from discriminating on the basis of protected characteristics, including:

  • Race
  • Gender
  • Pregnancy
  • National Origin
  • Religion
  • Disability
  • Age (40+)
  • Citizenship Status
  • Genetic Information

In addition, the Georgia Fair Employment Practices Act prohibits public employers with 15 or more employees from discriminating on the basis of:

  • Race
  • Color
  • Sex
  • Age
  • Disability
  • National Origin
  • Religion

Although most employers hire the best person for the job no matter what, not everyone is so pragmatic and ethical. Discrimination in the workplace can take many forms, including:

  • Refusing to promote someone because of their religious affiliation
  • Refusing to hire someone because of their skin color
  • Unfairly disciplining members of minority groups
  • Denying equal pay or benefits to an employee because of their gender
  • Denying training to an older employee

Wrongful Termination

Georgia is an at-will employment state, meaning an employer can terminate a work relationship at any given time, provided the firing is lawful. Wrongful termination refers to a dismissal that violates state or federal law. Examples of wrongful termination may include:

  • Discrimination: If you were dismissed on account of a protected characteristic such as your race, religion, or gender, you may have a case for wrongful termination.
  • Retaliation: If you were let go for filing a complaint against your employer, you may have grounds for a lawsuit.
  • Breach of Contract: If you have a written agreement guaranteeing your employment, your employer cannot legally dismiss you without good cause.

Workplace Harassment

When workers are subjected to unwelcome actions or remarks based on protected traits, it may constitute workplace harassment. Examples of workplace harassment include:

  • Unwanted physical contact
  • Commenting on an employee’s sexual orientation
  • Making sexual or lewd jokes
  • Remarking on a coworker’s appearance
  • Saying racial or ethnic slurs

In addition, workplace harassment can take the form of quid pro quo (this for that) harassment, in which an employee must satisfy a sexual demand to receive a benefit such as a promotion or raise. Alternatively, an employee’s status at the company may hinge on complying with a similar demand.

Contact a Georgia Labor & Employment Attorney

Not only can labor and employment violations lead to financial loss, they can have devastating effects on your well-being. Our attorneys recognize this, and that’s why we fight on behalf of Georgia workers to protect their rights.

You can rest assured knowing that Morgan & Morgan has a long track record of success litigating labor disputes. Our attorneys have filed more labor and employment lawsuits than any other firm in the country. What’s more, over the course of 30-plus years, we’ve recovered more than $7 billion for our clients across a variety of practice areas.

If you believe your workplace rights may have been violated, contact us. Fill out a free, no-obligation case evaluation today.

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