Retaliation Claim Brought Against Employer Ends in Settlement with DOJ

The Department of Justice (DOJ) recently reached a settlement with a national employer with regard to a complaint brought forth by an individual alleging that the company retaliated against him for threatening to pursue his legal rights under the anti-discrimination provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). The INA's anti-discrimination provision covers 4 types of discrimination: 1) citizenship/immigration status discrimination; 2) national origin discrimination; 3) document abuse; and 4) retaliation or intimidation.

The individual brought a complaint of retaliation against the company after it rescinded a job offer due to an error in the individual’s Social Security number. The individual was an immigrant with proper work authorization. When the company did not renew the offer for employment, even after the individual presented documentation demonstrating his valid work authorization, the individual told the company that they were engaging in unlawful discrimination under the INA’s anti-discrimination provision by refusing to hire him. The employee brought his claim to the DOJ.

On February 20, 2013, the DOJ reached an agreement with the employer, wherein the company will pay $3,000 in civil penalties to the DOJ and back pay in the amount of $1,800 to the individual. In addition, the company will undergo trainings conducted by the DOJ. The trainings will be on the INA’s anti-discrimination provision. The DOJ did not file a complaint in this matter.

Information contained in this publication is intended for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice or opinion, nor is it a substitute for the professional judgment of an attorney.