Start the conversation


Employment Law in Minnesota

We’re trial lawyers. Our core competency – above everything else – is trying cases to juries. And we specialize in beating giants.

Employment Law in Minneapolis

Confronting harassment and discrimination in the workplace is never easy, and its implications are far-reaching. But, having a dedicated attorney by your side to champion your rights and best interests helps you attain justice and restores order to your life.

No one, not even your employer, has the right to retaliate against you. If you have experienced harassment, unlawful deductions, false claims, or wrongful termination, you can choose to accept it and keep mum about it, or you can stand up for your rights and let the law work in your favor.

When your employer has discriminated against you, seeking the help of a dedicated Minneapolis employment law attorney is a wise choice. Madia represents employees in all aspects of employment litigation, including the following:

To save you the time scouring the internet for information and to guide you on this brave undertaking, here’s a primer on employment law.

The Basics of Employment Law

Minnesota is an “at-will” employment state, which means that employers have the right to terminate an employee for any reason that is within legal limits. But if the termination was decided on the basis of ageracegender, or disabilitysexual orientation, ancestry, creed, religion, or national origin, then the rule of law will apply. If you have been terminated for one of the following reasons, you may be asking yourself these questions:

  • I’ve been out of work for months now and am having trouble finding a job. Who will cover my lost wages?
  • I’ve suffered emotional distress as a result of my employer’s harassment and wrongful termination. Can I get the medical care and compensation that I need?
  • My employer wants me to sign a severance agreement that includes a release of all of employment claims. Should I sign it?

These are just some of the questions that workers have after suffering a wrongful termination by an employer. Our employment lawyers can help you answer these questions and will aggressively advocate and litigate on your behalf, so that you can start the process of getting your life back to normal.

One of the first challenges you will have to overcome is proving that you have been terminated unlawfully; the process of which can be intimidating, at first, as employers have their way of escaping the law. In many cases in the US, employers use pretextual or false reasons to disguise wrongful termination. This puts you in a tough position, and employers are aware of it. It makes it difficult for you to prove that your termination has been executed based on illegal reasons.

Keep in mind that this is a common case in at-will employment states. Employers sometimes abuse the at-will employment doctrine to justify the termination while concealing discriminatory reasons. If you can demonstrate that the reason your employer fired you is factually wrong, we will prove pretext and litigate on your behalf.

First, we will need you to demonstrate that the reason for your termination masks unlawful discrimination and we will likewise need you to identify the parties involved in the decision. Second, we will dedicate the time to investigate your claim by reviewing your employment status and productivity records to rule out possible grounds for termination, such as performance, behavior, or policy-related issues. Third, we will interview coworkers who might have assessments about your employment status and possibly unlawful termination.

Even professional environments can be a breeding ground for various forms of discrimination. Being subjected to antagonistic behavior in the workplace can wreak havoc on both your personal and professional life. Hostility could range from abusive and repetitive use of racial or gender slurs to leaving threats and retaliating against you based on your age, gender, sexual orientation, race, or disability.

If you have experienced or are still experiencing harassment in the workplace, we recommend that you notify your supervisor or HR manager, right away. We understand how difficult it must be to be embroiled in a tough situation at work, especially if you rely on your job to support your family and to meet your financial obligations.

We highly stress the importance of notifying your boss or employer and a trustworthy coworker the moment you experience harassment or receive any form of sexually-laced threat. Your employer must immediately launch an investigation of your case and take corrective action to protect you and other employees. If you notified management but they failed to do anything about it, then you can hold them liable and have a strong case against your employer.

In many co-worker harassment cases, an employer can be held liable for failing to foster safe working conditions for its employees. However, if the harasser is the employer or supervisor, different rules will apply. If this is the case, we highly recommend contacting us, your Minneapolis employment lawyers, as soon as you can, so we can advise you of the best course of action to take. If we decide to represent your case, we will help you achieve justice and reclaim what you’ve lost as a result of a hostile work environment.

If you’ve been a victim of sexual harassment at work, we advise you to move quickly and notify management; and, if nothing works, contact our firm, immediately. Minnesota’s statute of limitations for sexual harassment is only a year from the date you were abused, so we recommend confronting this case, as soon as you can.

Under Minnesota Law, sexual harassment is viewed as a form of sex discrimination, thus making it unlawful and unjust. If you think you have a weak case against your harasser or employer, we highly encourage you to speak to one of our attorneys so we can guide you and give you sound advice on pursuing the case.

Either way, if the harassment still goes on, document everything that has happened and keep a copy of your correspondence, such as emails, notes, and text messages, with the harasser. As advocates of employees’ and civil rights, we highly condemn sexual harassment in the workplace, and we will not hesitate to take your case to court if it is within our scope.

Both Minnesota and the United States mandate that employers pay employees minimum wage and pay time-and-a-half for overtime work. Minnesota also prohibits employers from making unlawful deductions from employees’ paychecks. The Fair Labor Standards Act and Minnesota Fair Labor Standards Act prohibit retaliation by employers against employees for making reports of unlawful wage and hour practices, such as failing to properly pay minimum wage or time-and-a-half for overtime.

The mandatory minimum wage is different under state and federal law. The state mandated minimum wage is currently $9.86 per hour (soon to be $15 in Minneapolis) and the federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour. That means that Minnesota businesses must pay Minnesota employees the higher rate which in this case is the state minimum wage. In line with this policy, all work done by employees for employers must be “on the clock.” Employees who are required to work “off the clock” may file a wage claim against their employers.

If you have been a victim of unpaid wages and/or unpaid overtime and unlawful deductions, you have a strong case against your employer. On top of wage claims, you may also pursue a breach of contract claim for working off-the-clock. Employers should never overlook their workers’ compensation and benefits and never hold it against them if they refuse to work overtime or off-the-clock.

We are employment lawyers in Minnesota who commit to championing the rights and interests of workers across the States of Minnesota and Wisconsin. Confronting unlawful employers can be an overwhelming experience for rank-and-file employees, but we will fight for justice on your behalf and make sure you receive the best outcome.

As passionate trial lawyers, we take pride in our depth of experience and success in winning settlements and trying employment cases before juries. 

Contact our Firm

First, contact our office, and tell us about your situation. You’ll talk with our staff for about 5-10 minutes. They’ll get some basic information about you and your case.

There’s some information that we’ll need when you call. For example, if you’re calling about an employment matter, we will want to know who you worked for, what kind of work you did, for how long worked there, how much you earned, if/when you were terminated, the reason given by your employer for any discipline and termination, and why do you think your employer did something unlawful or wrongful. If you have this information handy, it will allow us to proceed more quickly.

We will get back to you shortly – usually within a few hours. If your potential case is a little outside of our wheelhouse, we may refer you to attorneys, agencies, or organizations that we think might be better suited to handle your situation. Our goal is to ensure you get the best and most appropriate help possible for your particular situation. If that’s not us, we’ll try to tell you immediately and point you in the right direction.

If we think that we might be able help you, we’ll set an appointment for you to talk with one of our employment/civil rights lawyers. We’ll discuss your case, and give you our honest assessment of its strengths, weaknesses, and value. If we then mutually agree that Madia Law will represent you, we will talk about the process of moving forward with your case.

When you talk with our employment/civil rights lawyers, please be sure to have all relevant documents that you have in your possession. For example, if your case is employment law related, that could include:  pay-stubs, personnel files, employment handbooks/policies, letters from your employer (including your termination letter), any text messages or emails that you think are important, and any other documents that you think might be helpful.