Columbus Employment Attorney
Columbus Ohio Employment Attorney
Columbus Ohio Employment Attorney Matthew J.P. Coffman represents employees in nearly all aspects of litigation related to their employment in Courts and administrative agencies throughout Ohio. From employees’ applications for employment and continuing through their employment to their separations and severance, we are here to provide effective, experienced legal representation. Our Columbus Ohio employment attorney is here to help guide you through any workplace issues you are experiencing.
Our office regularly assists employees with employment discrimination or harassment before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Ohio Civil Rights Commission, and Ohio state and federal courts. Furthermore, we regularly work with individuals on any issues related to their compensation or medical leave. Finally, our Columbus Ohio employment attorney assists those employees who suffer from sexual harassment, a hostile work environment, retaliation, or a wrongful termination.
Upon an employee’s separation from employment, our Columbus Ohio employment attorney will work fight for your rights to unemployment compensation and/or demand for severance pay.
Contact our Columbus Ohio Employment Attorney for a FREE consultation
Below are some of the miscellaneous employment issues our Ohio employment attorney handles that do not fall squarely within the other practice area categories above. If you have any questions about any of the below or any other aspect of your employment, contact our Columbus Ohio employment attorney at 1-614-949-1181 for a free consultation.
Do you qualify for unemployment, but are being denied unemployment compensation benefits? Even if it’s determined that you are not eligible initially, you can still appeal and have a hearing. Keep in mind, this hearing is the most important stage of the unemployment process and having an attorney can make all the difference in your case.
How do you know if you are eligible for unemployment? Per the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, your employer must have just cause to terminate your employment in order to disqualify you for unemployment benefits and you must meet Ohio’s requirements for time worked and wages earned.
Employers retain attorneys and other services to assist with their defense, so you should take the unemployment process very seriously. After listening to testimony, the hearing officer will decide whether you are, indeed, eligible for unemployment compensation. To have the best chance, we encourage all terminated employees to retain an Ohio employment attorney who is experienced with unemployment proceedings to assist with the process.
Contact our office at 1-614-949-1181 for a free consultation with a Columbus Ohio employment attorney with any questions about your rights to unemployment compensation benefits.
ERISA (Retirement Income) Health Plan and Benefits
The Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) was created to protect retirement plans such as pension and health plans, and life and disability insurance. If you work for a private employer who offers employee-sponsored plans such as these, ERISA imposes fiduciary duties on those individuals who manage the plans.
ERISA gives participants the right to sue for benefits and breaches of fiduciary duty, but it’s a complicated area of law. If you need to pursue a civil claim against your employer, it makes sense to speak with an attorney who handles ERISA and long-term disability benefits. Trying to navigate the process of these claims and appeals without the right guidance may result in the loss of your benefits entirely.
If you make an initial ERISA claim and it is denied, you should immediately seek an Ohio employment attorney who handles ERISA claims. We can handle the appeal of your denied claim as the appeal process is detrimental to winning your case.
Contact our office at 1-614-949-1181 for a free consultation with a Columbus Ohio employment attorney with any questions about your rights to benefits under ERISA.
EEOC and OCRC Investigation and Mediation
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
The EEOC enforces federal laws against workplace discrimination, including:
- Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 – prohibits discrimination based on sex (including pregnancy), race, color, national origin and religion
- Americans with Disabilities (ADA) – prohibits discrimination based on disability
- Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA) – prohibits age discrimination
- Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA) – prohibits discrimination based on gene mutations which may increase the risk of an inherited disease
Employers subject to these federal laws cannot discriminate in work situations such as hiring, firing, promotions, harassment, training, wages, and benefits. If you are faced with discrimination or harassment at work, make sure to contact your HR department to process a formal complaint. If you don’t get the results you want, contact an attorney.
Upon filing an EEOC charge of discrimination, your employer will have an opportunity to mediate the claims. If your employer elects to participate in mediation, it is advisable for you to retain an attorney to represent your interests. If the employer does not wish to mediate, then the charge of discrimination will proceed to investigation. Even during the investigation, we would suggest having an Ohio employment attorney attorney to assist you. You are protected from retaliation if you file an EEOC charge of discrimination. Once an investigation is complete or you otherwise receive a right to sue, you can proceed with filing a lawsuit.
Ohio Civil Rights Commission (OCRC)
Like the EEOC, the OCRC is the Ohio agency that enforces state laws against discrimination in employment including discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, disability, age, military status, familial status, or ancestry. Ohio’s laws against discrimination apply to employers with four or more employees.Contact our office at 1-614-949-1181 for a free consultation with an Ohio employment attorney with any questions about the EEOC or OCRC processes.
If your employer has offered you severance, we recommend that you speak with a severance negotiation attorney prior to making a decision whether to accept the benefits offered by your employer. When you accept severance, employers require you to release any potential claims you may have against them, and you are legally bound by the agreement. Make sure you protect yourself by seeking legal counsel and review prior to signing a severance agreement. Severance comes in various forms, including:
- Lump sum payment
- Continued compensation
- Outplacement assistance
- Profit sharing
- Continued health insurance
With the assistance of an experienced severance negotiation attorney, you will be in a position to fully understand any rights you are waiving by signing a severance agreement. The attorney may also be able to negotiate a favorable result, including an increase in the amount of severance or other potential benefits.
Contact our office at 1-614-949-1181 for a free consultation with a Columbus Ohio severance negotiation attorney with any questions about severance.
The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) has strict requirements for completing background checks (also known as consumer reports). When an employer uses a consumer reporting agency to compile credit reports or criminal background reports, the employer must follow these guidelines:
- Disclose to you that a consumer report is being requested for employment purposes;
- Obtain authorization from you to obtain the consumer report;
- Provide a copy of the consumer report and a copy of the Summary of your Rights Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act before making any employment decisions, such as whether to hire, retain, promote, based on the background check (Link to Summary of Rights under FCRA); and
- Notify the applicant or employee of any decision based on the background check and make other disclosures regarding from which consumer reporting agency it obtained the background check.
Employers making employment decisions based upon background checks must take all the steps listed above. Failure to do so is a violation of the FCRA. If your employer has not fulfilled these requirements, you should contact a Columbus Ohio background check attorney.
Contact our office at 1-614-949-1181 for a free consultation with a Columbus Ohio background check attorney with any questions about background checks.