Bankruptcy Discrimination – What to Know

Did you go through bankruptcy? Bankruptcy can impact every aspect of your life. It can be devastating on an emotional, social and financial level, but it’s often an individual’s only option. Personal bankruptcy can arise from a vast range of different conditions and circumstances, ranging from divorce, a national economic disaster to a job loss as the result of a failed business, to medical issues like an illness or an injury that leads to short-term or long-term disability. You could also fall victim after a natural disaster or the death of an immediate family member. Even those who have always practiced good financial planning may find themselves in a position facing steep debts, car repossession, the foreclosure of their home or other real estate, and even civil claims. Sometimes, bankruptcy is the best option for getting your life back on track.

Unfortunately, a serious and very negative social stigma surrounds bankruptcy and in many cases, an individual may be targeted and discriminated against due to a past bankruptcy filing. An employee or potential employee may be viewed as financially irresponsible, untrustworthy or even prone to ethical compromise via bribery. As a result of this discrimination, a person may be fired or removed from a position of trust, while potential employees may be denied a job — resulting in even more harm to the person’s financial situation and their professional reputation.

The law does offer protection against discrimination in the workplace, and that’s exactly where our labor and employment lawyers can assist. Serving Orlando, Florida, and the other communities throughout Central Florida, the Law Office of Hogan & Hogan, P.A. is here to help you get the justice you deserve by filing a workplace discrimination claim.

If you have been the victim of discrimination for bankruptcy, contact the Orlando lawyers of the Law Office of Hogan & Hogan, P.A. to chat about your case in a confidential, no-cost consultation session. Call 407-422-2188.

The Most Common Questions About Bankruptcy Discrimination and Workplace Discrimination Laws

The Orlando employment attorneys with the Law Office of Hogan & Hogan, P.A. frequently receive questions about financial ruin prejudice and other forms of harassment and discrimination in the workplace. So our legal team has compiled information on some of the most common issues that our Orlando attorneys address on this subject.

What Types of Employers Are Included in the Anti-Bankruptcy Discrimination Laws? Is There Any Difference Between Public and Private Sector Employers?

The law prohibits liquidation prejudice in the case of government agencies and other public sector employers and private employers.

Notably, there is a key difference between the federal bankruptcy prejudice laws that apply to public sector and private sector employers.

In the case of the public sector, employers cannot refuse to hire a person due to a current or past bankruptcy filing.

In the case of the private sector, employers can refuse to hire a person due to a current or past bankruptcy filing.

But both public and private sector employers cannot terminate or discriminate against a current employee.

Here are the key passages. The following applies to government employers:

“…a governmental unit may not…deny employment to, terminate the employment of, or discriminate with respect to employment against, a person that is or has been a debtor under this title [Title 11] or a bankrupt or a debtor under the Bankruptcy Act.”

The following passage applies to private employers:

“No private employer may terminate the employment of, or discriminate with respect to employment against, an individual who is or has been a debtor under this title, a debtor or bankrupt under the Bankruptcy Act, or an individual associated with such debtor or bankrupt.”

What Constitutes Bankruptcy Discrimination at Work?

Bankruptcy inequity can take a number of different forms, including:

  • refusing a job to a person who’s been through a bankruptcy (public sector only);
  • demoting or refusing a promotion to an employee who has experienced a bankruptcy;
  • making harassing, derogatory or humiliating remarks about an employee’s personal financial situation and bankruptcy;
  • altering an employee’s job description based on suppositions and assumptions after learning of the party’s bankruptcy; or
  • firing an employee who has filed for bankruptcy.

gavel next to scales of justiceAny act of workplace discrimination that is made on the grounds of a party’s bankruptcy can potentially constitute a violation. Each case is unique, so it’s best to consult a lawyer to review the facts in your case.

How Did My Client or Employer (or Prospective Employer) Find Out About My Bankruptcy?

Many employers, prospective employers and even clients run an individual’s credit report and this can reveal if an individual has filed a personal bankruptcy, while also revealing potential financial issues in the case of a person who has not yet filed bankruptcy.

An employer or potential employer may also perform a background check on an individual. A background check can reveal a range of personal information, including bankruptcy filings, foreclosures, and legal issues, amongst other info.

How Do You File a Claim for Bankruptcy Discrimination at Work?

Your attorney can help you to file a federal workplace discrimination claim with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). You have one year (365 days) from the most recent incident of discrimination to file the claim.

It’s also possible to file a workplace discrimination claim with the Florida Commission on Human Relations (FCHR). The FCHR allows the victim a timeframe of 300 days from the most recent incident of discrimination to file a claim.

The agencies have 180 days to investigate the claim from the date the other party is notified and replies with a written response to the claim. The matter may be resolved in mediation; an administrative hearing may be held or you may pursue a lawsuit. It varies depending upon the exact nature of your case.

Our Orlando Attorneys Will Assist With Your Bankruptcy Discrimination Lawsuit or Claim

Bankruptcy DiscriminationBankruptcy can be a very emotional, stressful and trying experience. Most individuals believe that once they get through the bankruptcy process, they’ve survived the worst of it. But in reality, troubles can continue if you become the victim of discrimination, even years after you’ve resolved your financial troubles.

Many employers erroneously assume that an individual’s financial issues will impact their on-the-job performance, but this is not necessarily true. Workplace discrimination laws protect employees (or prospective employees) from being a target of discrimination. The Law Office of Hogan & Hogan, P.A.’s attorneys are here to help you fight this act of employee discrimination, whether it’s through a civil suit and litigation or another remedy.

When you turn to the Law Office of Hogan & Hogan, P.A. to handle your case, you’ll enjoy our “clients first” approach to employment law. We go out of our way to keep our clients informed and involved, while simplifying and streamlining your legal dealings in an effort to minimize any stress that you experience. Our goal is to help you get the compensation you deserve for your losses.

If you’ve been the victim of insolvency discrimination at work, contact our law firm to discuss your case in a free, confidential consultation session.

Call the Law Office of Hogan & Hogan, P.A. at 407-422-2188.