Employment Litigation IT'S ALL ABOUT THE RIGHT CHOICE

Houston Employment Attorneys

Fighting for Houston Employees at All Levels

A web of federal, state, and local laws is designed to protect employees from unfair treatment, such as discrimination, retaliation, and sexual harassment. Some employers act in bad faith and hope their employees do not fully understand their rights. Others will resort to unscrupulous tactics to conceal unlawful conduct.

At Potts Law Firm, we are committed to protecting and enforcing the rights of employees at all levels throughout Texas. If your rights as an employee were violated, you may be entitled to compensation and other remedies, including reinstatement if you were wrongfully terminated. Our Houston employment lawyers have recovered over $1 billion for our clients and have what it takes to hold employers accountable. It’s all about our power, clients, and results, and when you choose us to represent you, you can rest assured that we will leverage the full extent of our resources to secure the best possible outcome.

You will owe no legal fees unless we win your case, so contact us online or call (713) 348-9638 to schedule a free initial consultation. Same-day appointments are available, and we offer our services in English and Spanish.

What Is Considered Discrimination in a Texas Workplace?

Unlawful discrimination takes place when someone makes an employment decision – often an adverse action – based on an employee’s protected characteristic. Anti-discrimination laws at the state and federal levels define these protected characteristics. If a private company has at least 15 employees, it must comply with both Texas’s anti-discrimination law as well as several of the key federal laws. Companies of all sizes must comply with the Equal Pay Act, which requires men and women to be paid equally for equal work. Not all anti-discrimination laws will necessarily apply if you work for an employer with very few employees, so consider getting legal advice if you are not sure whether you are covered.

Generally, a Texas employer cannot take adverse action against an employee or prospective employee because of their:

  • Race
  • National Origin
  • Color
  • Citizenship Status
  • Sex
  • Sexual Orientation
  • Gender Identity
  • Pregnancy Status
  • Religion
  • Physical or Mental Disability
  • Age (40 or over)
  • Genetic Information

Examples of discriminatory treatment that may warrant legal action include being:

  • Fired or let go because of a protected characteristic
  • Passed over for a job or promotion because of a protected characteristic
  • Demoted, given fewer hours, or assigned undesirable tasks because of a protected characteristic
  • Denied a reasonable workplace accommodation for your disability or religious beliefs
  • Subject to a hostile work environment where your protected characteristic is frequently the subject of inappropriate jokes or comments

Employers will seldom be honest about discriminatory intent, which can make these cases challenging. Our Houston employment attorneys understand how to prove workplace discrimination and will work to recover compensatory and potentially even punitive damages.

What Constitutes Sexual Harassment in a Texas Workplace?

Sexual harassment is a form of sex-based discrimination, making it unlawful in practically all Texas workplaces. Under expanded anti-sexual harassment laws enacted in 2021, Texas employees must take “immediate and appropriate corrective action” whenever they learn about any instance of sexual harassment or reasonably should have known that sexual harassment was occurring. In other words, an employer does not have to be directly responsible for sexual harassment to be liable. If you reported sexual harassment and your employer did not take adequate steps to stop it, you may have a case.

Sexual harassment comes in two forms:

  • Hostile Work Environments. When the frequency and severity of inappropriate sexual comments (including “compliments”) or unwanted touching make it harder for you to do your job, you are experiencing a hostile work environment. Anyone can create a hostile work environment, and the perpetrators do not necessarily need to be members of your organization. Clients, independent contractors, and other parties present in your workplace can create a hostile work environment, and your employer is responsible for addressing their inappropriate conduct when they learn about it.
  • Quid Pro Quos. If someone offers you an advantage (or threatens a penalty) in exchange for a sexual favor, they are proposing an unlawful quid pro quo.

If you feel you are not being paid fairly, do not hesitate to discuss your concerns with our legal professionals. Call (713) 348-9638 or contact us online to get started.

It's All About Your Recovery

Hear From Our Past Client's
  • I had a wonderful experience with this law firm.

    “They were able to complete it in a timely manner and were great at keeping me up to date with communication throughout the entire process. I highly recommend using this law firm if the need arises.”

    - Stephen P.
  • I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend him or any of the team at Potts.

    “Michael Bins has been extremely helpful in helping us to navigate a situation with an insurance claim on a commercial property. He’s gone above and beyond in moving our case toward a positive resolution that we’re satisfied with.”

    - Theo C.
  • The Potts Law Firm is a powerhouse of brilliant attorneys.

    “They know the law from every angle, dig deep, and will not accept anything less than what was asked in the original suit. The Potts team never backed down until the case was settled in full.”

    - Molly H.
  • I highly recommend Adam and Potts Law Firm

    “From the first meeting, Adam made me feel like he had my best interest at heart and took care of everything.  I can't say enough good things about how helpful, professional, and caring Adam was to me.”

    - Mary H.
  • I would recommend Potts Law Firm for any and all legal matters that come my way in the future!

    “The Potts Law Firm answered all of my numerous questions in layman’s terms which is what I needed. I was able to lie back & heal from my injuries knowing full well that my obligations were being handled appropriately.”

    - W. Gary

Am I Owed Overtime Pay as a Texas Employee?

Under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), all non-exempt Texas employees must receive overtime pay (one and a half times their regular rate) for all hours worked in excess of 40 hours in a 7-day period. Despite the straightforwardness of this law, employers will go to great lengths to avoid paying overtime. One of the most common means of circumventing the FLSA is misclassifying employees as “exempt” or “independent contractors,” neither of which are entitled to overtime compensation. Do not assume your employer is acting in good faith if they inform you that you are “exempt” or an independent contractor, as they may be attempting to deny you overtime and other benefits you are owed.

Employers may also attempt to edit timecards or threaten retaliation if you report overtime-qualifying hours. None of these practices are lawful, as you must be paid appropriately for all hours worked.

it's all about your best possible result

Explore our past successes
  • ERISA Class Action Settlement $36 Million

    T. “Micah” Dortch served as class counsel in the ERISA class action, Diebold, et al. v. Northern Trust Investments, N.A. et al., 09-Civ-1934 (Diebold), in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois where the Court approved a collective settlement of $36 million dollars for class representatives resulting in millions of dollars returned to investors.

How Do I Know If I Have Been Wrongfully Terminated as Texas Employee?

Texas is an at-will employment state, meaning they do not necessarily need to have a reason to terminate you. However, there are limitations, as a Texas employer cannot legally fire you or lay you off on discriminatory or retaliatory grounds.

You may have been wrongfully terminated if there was evidence that you were fired or let go because of a protected characteristic, such as your race, sexual orientation, disability, or age (if you are over 40). Your employer is not likely to tell you that they are terminating you for these reasons and will in fact use other excuses to justify the move. For example, you may become targeted in a layoff that just so happens to eliminate employees of a certain race or employees over a certain age.

You can also be wrongfully terminated on retaliatory grounds. Certain employment activities are considered “protected,” meaning your employer cannot treat you adversely for participating in one. Examples of protected employment activities include reporting unlawful conduct, cooperating with a government investigation, and refusing to do something illegal.

If you think you may have been wrongfully terminated, turn to Potts Law Firm. Our Houston employment lawyers can assess your circumstances and advise whether you have a case. In addition to potentially getting you compensation for back pay, front pay, the costs of searching for a new job, and other damages, we may be able to secure a reinstatement to your position.

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