Virginia Termination Based on Sexual Orientation Lawyer

Despite many advances in social acceptance and civil rights for the LGBTQ+ community, sexual orientation discrimination persists in many settings. If you have suffered from workplace discrimination based on your sexual orientation or gender identity, you may need the help of a Virginia termination based on sexual orientation lawyer. One of our dedicated wrongful termination attorneys at the Spiggle Law Firm could advise you about your legal right to bring a charge of discrimination, file a complaint with a local commission, or take other corrective actions.

Protections Against Workplace Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation

Legal protections against discrimination based on sexual orientation vary from place to place across the nation and even within Virginia. Employees who have suffered from sexual orientation discrimination may benefit from getting the guidance of a dedicated Virginia attorney who knows how the law address termination based on sexual orientation.

Federal Law

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and a number of courts have found that discrimination based on sexual orientation violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Title VII is a broad-reaching federal law that prohibits many types of employment discrimination and applies to almost all employers with 15 or more employees. Some federal courts have agreed with the EEOC’s interpretation of the law, while others have not, making this an unsettled area of the law.

State Law

At present, the Virginia Human Rights Act does not protect private sector employees from discrimination based on their sexual orientation. In 2018, the state Senate passed an act that would amend the law to prohibit sexual orientation discrimination, but until that law passes the entire legislature, the law remains as it has been.

Public employees in Virginia have more protection, however, thanks to an executive order signed by Governor Ralph Northam. That order prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation in public employment.

Local Ordinances

Although state law does not bar sexual orientation discrimination by private employers, some local governments in Virginia have passed local ordinances that do, including Charlottesville, Arlington County, and Alexandria City. These ordinances may apply to employers that are too small for Title VII to apply.

How to Initiate a Sexual Orientation Discrimination Case in Virginia

Before being able to file a case in court, you typically must go through an administrative process. For cases involving federal or state anti-discrimination laws, this involves filing a Charge of Discrimination with either the EEOC or the Virginia Council on Human Rights (VCHR). In order to make a complaint under local government ordinances, you or your termination based on sexual orientation lawyer in Virginia should file a complaint with the appropriate local commission.

As with many legal claims, strict time limits apply to sexual orientation discrimination cases. State law charges must be filed within 180 days of the alleged discrimination and for complaints based on federal law a 300-day time limit applies. Failure to meet the relevant time limit can be fatal to your ability to effectively uphold your rights regardless of the circumstances.

How a Virginia Termination Based on Sexual Orientation Lawyer Could Help

The legal rights of LGBTQ+ individuals are constantly evolving, and applicable laws and regulations can be complex. If your employer terminated you because of your sexual orientation, getting legal advice from a knowledgeable and experienced attorney may be crucial to understanding your legal rights and learning about actions that you could take to address wrongful discrimination.

Getting legal help from a compassionate Virginia termination based on sexual orientation lawyer could help you effectively present a strong case for recovery of any losses you have suffered because of workplace discrimination. For more information, call the Spiggle Law Firm today, or click here to use our no-cost online case review tool.