I’m Jamie Gilmore, an employment attorney with Bailey & Galyen. My legal practice and my employment section at Bailey & Galyen are solely dedicated to representing employees. Everyday, I take calls from individuals with questions about a situation with their employer. These employees seek justice for the wrongs they have experienced. I have other videos dedicated to determining whether an employer has committed an illegal act. This video is dedicated to what you can expect as a monetary settlement for your claims.
I want to reiterate the importance of hiring an employment attorney from the get-go. If an employer has more than the required number of employees, your employer can be sued, but only if you file a Charge of Discrimination with the EEOC or TWC within a certain number of days. If you do not file the Charge of Discrimination within those time limits, you cannot file a lawsuit in court.
First and foremost, it is incredibly unlikely that you will recover anywhere near a million dollars for your employment claims. Frankly, the federal and state laws prohibit that kind of recovery. Damages in discrimination claims are typically broken up into four categories: lost wages, compensatory, punitive damages, and attorneys’ fees. Lost wages include the money you have lost between the day you lost your job and trial and possible after trial. Lost earnings typically also include bonuses, earnings growth, and benefits. However, you are legally obligated to mitigate those damages by finding another job. You must immediately begin a job search. If not, your available recovery stops.
Compensatory and punitive damages are also those damages for a plaintiff. Compensatory damages include pain and suffering, humiliation, and loss of reputation because of the discrimination. But this amount of damages is not often an extraordinarily high number. Punitive damages are capped at three hundred thousand dollars for employers that employee more than 500 employees. And that amount incrementally drops for employers with less than 500 employees.
Finally, you are entitled to recover your attorneys’ fees for pursuing the lawsuit, but those are used to pay your attorney. This information is not meant to dissuade you from contacting me or pursuing an employment suit. However, it is important to know what could happen going into a consultation with an attorney.
Sometimes, a case can be resolved through mediation before a lawsuit is filed. This oftentimes happens at the EEOC after your Charge of Discrimination is filed. An early mediation usually results in a smaller settlement, but the employee receives their settlement without having to wait several years to receive their money. Having an attorney negotiate any settlement usually results in a higher settlement amount.
We employment attorneys at Bailey & Galyen are aware of the ins and outs of fighting for employees’ rights. We are experienced litigators that will fight relentlessly for our clients. We offer a free consultation with experienced employment attorneys and staff to give you the advice and guidance you need to make a decision about your legal rights. Call me today to discuss your employment situation.