Employment Law


In Oklahoma, many employers and employees work in an environment where they feel like they are part of a large family working closely together to achieve a common goal. Unfortunately, this is not the case for many employees. Many employees go to work each day in an environment where they are treated unfairly and not appreciated for their hard work. Some of these situations are protected under federal or state employment laws and some are not.

Employees are protected under certain circumstances from discrimination, harassment, retaliation and wrongful termination. There are many situations, however, that are not actionable. Each case is unique for this reason. The Don Herring Law Firm can assist you in answering questions about your employment rights. As a general rule, an employer can terminate an employee for “any reason, or no reason at all,” so long as that reason does not violate state or federal employment laws. The question then becomes, what employment problems are really protected?

The Basics of Employment Law

Most of the employment laws in place, both federal and state, protect employees from being treated differently, either by failure to hire, demotion, termination, harassment, retaliation, etc., based upon certain characteristics. These include race or ethnicity, gender, age (over 40), disability, and religion. Gender discrimination includes pregnancy and sexual harassment as well. Additionally, employees are protected from an adverse employment action if they assert a right available to them (e.g. file a workers’ compensation claim, take leave under the Family Medical Leave Act or report a violation of the company to a state agency). Conversely, if your employer asks you to do something illegal (e.g. falsify journals as an accountant) and you refuse, they are not supposed to retaliate against you and take any adverse employment action.

Discrimination in the Workplace

Discrimination can appear in many forms. In many cases, employment discrimination based upon ethnicity or national origin relates to unfair or poor treatment that stems from language barriers or policies or fluency requirements that may be prohibited. Gender discrimination can occur because a person doesn’t conform to certain gender-based stereotypes.

For persons with disabilities, an employer is required to try to make the workplace suitable through reasonable accommodation as long as such accommodation is not an undue burden on the employer. This can include simple actions such as a new type of chair or flexible working hours.

Protecting Your Rights as a Worker

The Don Herring Law Firm will work to protect all of your rights under both state and federal guidelines. Don’t delay in securing experienced representation for your legal matter. Call our firm today 405-843-8686 or online donherringlaw.com to schedule an in-person or over the phone appointment with a member of our team.