Sunday, October 30, 2016

Could You Be the Target of a Corporate Compliance Lawsuit?

a graphic of aiming at a target through a rifle scope

Do not risk the loss of reputation and the cost of a corporate compliance lawsuit. Make sure your entire workforce has been through proven corporate compliance training so they know how to behave on the job within Federal and State guidelines. The risk is otherwise too great.

The conditions for anti-discrimination legal action have been relaxed over recent years so that it is easier today than ever for employees to call foul. There is a proliferation of laws regarding protection of LGBT workers, new legislation facilitating worker suits for pay discrimination, tougher labor and employment laws and the hiring of hundreds of new compliance officials. And, since 2008, all federal contractors and subcontractors are required to adopt codes of conduct and to train their employees on them.

Additionally, even if you win a legal battle waged by an employee over alleged discrimination or harassment, you are liable to be held responsible for retaliation. Here is a case in point:

A St. Louis, Missouri police officer filed a claim of discrimination. After that, she was ordered to attend training, then told she could not go to the training, and then criticized in front of her entire unit by her commanding officer for not attending the training she had been denied. The officer lost her discrimination case, but won on retaliation. (Missouri Ct App 06/28/2016)

Are you sure your managers are clear about the risks for your company every time they evaluate performance, re-assign jobs or respond to employee issues? If you have any doubt, you need to ensure that they are well trained to understand the legal implications of their interactions with employees, to spot employment law risks, document their business reasons for all decisions and seek advice on any employment issues from HR and Legal.

Your goal as an ethical, fair-minded and law-abiding employer is to build a respectful workplace and prevent lawsuits before they even arise.  Give managers the background and the corporate compliance training they need to avoid lawsuits and promote the kind of positive culture you seek.

Download Corporate Compliance Toolkit Now

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